Maryland Outdoor Club
Sun, May 11 2003 - Easy Hike on Mother's Day (Calvert Cliffs) (View Original Event Details)

Event Organizer(s): Amy Pickwick
Participants:Amy Pickwick, Angela Grillo, Young Kim, Katie Elgin, Jaili Fajardo, kathleen curry, Rebecca Firoved, Aaron Firoved, Adam Miller, Martin Acadieus, Kristen Buck

Write Up:
The adventure began at 10 AM, as it took 12 people about 15 minutes to decide who was riding in which vehicle to the carpool. (We're so laid back, that we are pretty indecisive about most things). Anyway, we finally got on the road, in 3 cars and headed for the Beltway. Highlights from the carpooling included Young's supposed 'lead foot,' although for some reason didn't arrive any faster than the rest of us, and Aaron's inability to be co-pilot of our car.

When we got to the trail at 11 AM, we met up with 2 more of our hikers and got the hike underway pretty quickly. Most of the trail was pretty soft, made up of a sand, clay, and a dirt-type mixture, and was muddy at times. We saw and listened to the trickle of several small waterfalls in the woods, enjoyed a 10 minute diversion as we took the boardwalk out into the middle of the swamp. And, finally after only 1.8 miles of pretty easy walking, the path opened up to the Bay! The view of the cliffs was amazing.

60-Second History Lesson:
The huge Miocene cliffs that dominate the waterfront rise 100 feet in the air and are slowly eroding at the rate of nearly 3 feet per year. They were created over 10 million years ago when the Chesapeake Bay was still a shallow sea. As the waters receded, the sea floor became exposed and what was to become fossils gathered at this point. The cliffs are the most extensive assemblage of Miocene fossils in the eastern U.S. The park consists of over 1,000 acres of designated wildlands.

The beach is littered with fossils that have fallen out of the cliffs and washed ashore. The park allows visitors to take what they find, so we spent most of the time here looking for fossils, enjoying our packed lunches, and talking to one another before heading the 1.8 miles back to the cars.

We'll definitely be doing this event again next year!

--Amy Pickwick

(This hike is from Country Walks Near Washington, available at our online books & magazine shop).

Have some photos from this event that you'd like to share in our photo album? Please forward them to Amy Lipsius at Please note that we prefer to receive the photos in approximately 640x480 or 750x500 pixels - do NOT send original high-res photos. If you have a LOT of photos, please submit up to twenty of your favorites (only) for a day event, or up to forty of your favourites for a multi-day event. Thank you.