Tuckahoe State Park (Queen Anne’s County)
13070 Crouse Mill Road, Queen Anne, MD 21657
Tuckahoe State Park surrounds the upper reaches of Tuckahoe Creek, a quiet Eastern Shore stream flowing south to the Choptank River and bordered for most of its length by wooded marshlands supporting an abundance of wildlife. This 3,929 acre park spans the county line between Caroline and Queen Anne’s Counties; the Tuckahoe Creek itself is the border between the two counties. Since many birders like to keep track of which county they’re in when birding, this description covers access on the Queen Anne’s County side of the park, that is, the part of the park west of Tuckahoe Creek. See the separate entry for Tuckahoe State Park – Caroline County in this Birder’s Guide.
Within the park, a 60-acre man-made lake provides habitat for water-oriented birds. Crouse Mill Road crosses the south end of the lake, linking the park sections in Queen Anne’s and Caroline Counties. The park has 20 miles of scenic hiking, biking, and equestrian trails. The trails, for the most part, are remarkably dry for a sea level venue, the sandy soil offering better than average drainage. The few really wet spots have either by-pass trails or boardwalks to traverse them.
Trails in the Queen Anne’s County portion of the park include an Equestrian Loop, Pee Wee’s Trail, Greiner’s Fishing Trail, the Little Florida Trail, and Turkey Hill Trail; see trail map at link at left. All of these trails will take you through the rich forested habitats of the Tuckahoe Creek Valley. Several parking areas provide access to the trail system and lakefront. A boat ramp and parking area at the southwest corner of the lake provide access to the water. Apart from the boat ramp and equestrian center, the Queen Anne’s County side of the park tends to be quieter and less visited than the Caroline County side. Use the trail map at the link at left and see the Directions below to plan your birding route.
In addition to the trails and boat launch, Tuckahoe State Park offers canoe and kayak rentals, mountain bike rentals, fishing, hunting, an archery range, a disc golf course, an equestrian center, picnic areas, a campground, a playground, and other amenities. Many of the facilities are wheelchair-accessible. Although the park has many visitor amenities and attracts a lot of visitors, the trails away from the main areas are quiet and birdy, offering habitats typical of Mid-Atlantic coastal forests.
Over 190 species have been reported on eBird from the Queen Anne’s County side of the park. There are three eBird hotspots for the Queen Anne’s County portion of the park:
The area around Tuckahoe Lake is excellent for pursuing migrants during spring and fall and for waterfowl in winter. Breeding species include Wood Duck, Bald Eagle, Osprey, Barred Owl, Belted Kingfisher, Warbling Vireo, Yellow-breasted Chat, Louisiana Waterthrush, Prothonotary Warbler, Kentucky Warbler, Pine Warbler, and both Baltimore and Orchard Orioles. Wintering species include both kinglets, Winter Wren, Rusty Blackbird, and Yellow-rumped Warbler.
The parking lot at the boat ramp is paved. Trail-head lots are gravel. See the trail map at link at left and Directions below for locations.
Tuckahoe State Park offers accessible picnic areas, hunting, visitors’ center, playgrounds, restrooms and campground facilities. ◾ The campground includes cabins, tent sites, and sites with RV hookups. ◾ Tuckahoe State Park is a part of the Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network of the National Park Service. ◾ The Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network and the Maryland Historic Trust have produced a series of water trail maps for the Choptank River and Tuckahoe Creek, available as a free download. ◾ Tuckahoe State Park is contained within the Tuckahoe Creek Important Bird area, as designated by the National Audubon Society. ◾ There is no chapter of the Maryland Ornithological Society centered in Queen Anne’s County, so local birders may be members of chapters in adjoining counties: the Kent County Bird Club, the Caroline County Bird Club, or the Talbot Bird Club, all of which offer field trips and meetings with informative presentations, all free and open to the public.
Tuckahoe State Park is located approximately 35 miles east of the Bay Bridge, just off MD Route 404, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. These directions will take you to access points on the Queen Anne’s County side of the park, west of the Tuckahoe Creek.
From the Bay Bridge: Travel east on US Route 50. At the split for US Route 50 and US Route 301, bear to the right to stay on US Route 50. In approximately 6.9 miles, make a left to go east on MD Route 404. Go approximately 5.7 miles to the intersection with MD Route 309/Starr Road. Make a left to go northwest on Route 309 for 1.1 miles, then turn right on Horseshoe Road. Then follow directions below to one of the access points for the park.
From points south and east on the Eastern Shore (including Easton and Salisbury: Use US Route 50 north and then turn right (east) on MD Route 404. Go approximately 5.7 miles to the intersection with MD Route 309/Starr Road. Make a left to go northwest on Route 309 for 1.1 miles, then turn right on Horseshoe Road. Then follow directions below to one of the access points for the park.
From points north on the Eastern Shore: Take US Route 301 south, then MD Route 213 south; then take US Route 50 south. Turn left (east) on MD Route 404. Go approximately 5.7 miles to the intersection with MD Route 309/Starr Road. Make a left to go northwest on Route 309 for 1.1 miles, then turn right on Horseshoe Road. Then follow directions below to one of the access points for the park.
- For the trail-head parking for Greiner’s Fishing Trail: From the intersection of Route 309 and Horseshoe Road, drive north 0.9 miles on Horseshoe Road. The parking area will be on your right (east side of the road), soon after Horseshoe Road makes a sharp bend to the left. To reach the trail-head, walk south on Horseshoe Road (that is, back the way you came) for about 400 feet. The trail runs due east along the edge where field meets a woodlot and then continues into the woods, toward Tuckahoe Creek. From Greiner’s FIshing Trail, you can turn south onto the Little Florida Trail, or north onto Pee Wee’s Trail, or go straight onto a spur trail that will take you across the creek (wet crossing, no bridge) to join the Tuckahoe Valley Trail on the Caroline County side of the park.
- For the trail-head parking for the Equestrian Loop Trail and north end of Pee Wee’s Trail: From the trail-head parking for Greiner’s Fishing Trail, drive north of Horshsoe Road for 0.8 miles to a T-intersection at Crouse Mill Road. Turn right to go east on Crouse Mill Road. The parking for the Equestrian Loop/North end of Pee Wee’s Trail will be on the right (south side of the road) in 0.7 miles. There is additional parking nearby at the Equestrian Center, on the opposite side of the road (619 Crouse Mill Road, Queen Anne, MD).
- For the south end lakeside parking (no trails, but good view of the lake): From the trail-head parking for the Equestrian Loop Trail and north end of Pee Wee’s Trail, drive north on Crouse Mill Road for 0.5 miles and bear right at the triangular intersection near the lake shore to the parking area on the right (south side of the road).
- For the boat launch ramp parking area: From the south end lakeside parking area, turn left to go north on Crouse Mill Road with the shore of the lake on your right. The boat ramp parking will be obvious, on the right (east) side of the road in just 0.2 miles.
Queen Anne’s County: Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center – Horsehead, Conquest Preserve, Ferry Point Park, Matapeake Clubhouse & Beach / Matapeake Fishing Pier & Boat Ramp, Terrapin Nature Park, Wye Island Natural Resources Management Area
Caroline County: Adkins Arboretum, Idylwild Wildlife Management Area, Martinak State Park, Tuckahoe State Park (Caroline County)
Kent County: Chesapeake Farms & St. Paul’s Millpond, Eastern Neck National Wildlife Refuge, Millington Wildlife Management Area, Sassafras Natural Resources Management Area and Turner’s Creek Park
Talbot County: Bill Burton Fishing Pier State Park – Talbot County Side, Black Walnut Point Natural Resources Management Area, Claiborne Landing, Pickering Creek Audubon Center, Poplar Island
Bottomland DeciduousConifersHedgerows Lawn, Ballfields, Golf Course Agricultural Crop Fields or Fallow FieldsHay Meadows, Pasture, Grass FieldOld Fields, Shrubby Meadows Forested SwampFreshwater Marsh or FloodplainFreshwater Pond, Lake, or ReservoirMud Flats (Tidal or Non-Tidal)Rivers & Streams
Bicycle Trails (Bikes may be prohibited on some trails)Boat or Canoe/Kayak LaunchFishingFree - No Entry FeeHiking/Walking TrailsHorseback RidingHuntingParkingPets AllowedWater ViewWheelchair Accessible Features
Audubon Important Bird AreasChesapeake Bay Gateways NetworkPonds, Lakes, and ReservoirsState ParksWater Trails