|In Short:||Montgomery / 301.948.5053 / 4 mi. / 550 acres / natural / links to Agricultural History Farm Park|
|Summary:||Blue Mash Nature Trail is a 5 mile lightly trafficked loop trail located near Gaithersburg, Maryland that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.|
The Blue Mash natural surface trails are located in the buffer area surrounding the site of the former Oaks Landfill, near Mt. Zion. The Blue Mash Nature Trail commemorates the pre-Civil War settlement called Blue Mash inhabited for many years by freed slaves. "Mash" was the colloquial pronunciation of marsh. Before emancipation, the Blue Mash swamp was known to have been a hiding place for fugitive slaves. Unless noted otherwise on the map, trails marked Natural Surface and Hard Surface are Shared by All trails which includes hikers, bikers and equestrians.
|Activities:||horseback riding, hiking, biking.|
|Location:||6001 Olney-Laytonsville Road
Laytonsville MD 20882|
You can reach the Blue Mash Nature Trail from either I-495 or I-270 as follows: From the Capital Beltway (I-495), take Exit 31A to merge onto MD-97N/Georgia Avenue toward Wheaton. Proceed 10.3 miles north on Georgia Avenue to Olney-Laytonsville Road (Route 108). Turn left on Olney-Laytonsville Road and proceed west for 2.5 miles to Zion Road. Turn right on Zion Road and travel north .75 miles. You will cross Brookfield Road (a four-way stop). Shortly after you pass under large power lines, look to the left for the Blue Mash Nature Trail sign. Turn left into the landfill entrance and immediately right into the hiking parking lot.
From I-270, take Exit 8, Shady Grove Road, and proceed 3.5 miles east to Muncaster Mill Road (Route 115). Turn right on Muncaster Mill Road and proceed 0.25 miles to Muncaster Road. Turn left on Muncaster Road and proceed 3.5 miles to Olney-Laytonsville Road (Route 108). Turn right onto Olney-Laytonsville Road and proceed about 50 yards to Brookville Road. Turn left on Brookfield Road and proceed 0.5 miles to Zion Road. Turn left on Zion Road and travel north about 0.5 miles. Shortly after you pass under large power lines, look to the left for the Blue Mash Nature Trail sign. Turn left into the landfill entrance and immediately right into the hiking parking lot.
|Length/Surface:||3.75 miles of single track natural surface trails. The trail below is about 5.03 miles in length.|
|Trail Characteristics:||The trail traverses about a mile and half, and consists of mostly level mown grass paths. Expect the grass to be wet early in the morning, and there are a few drainage swales to cross as well, which are likely to have water or mud in them. So please wear appropriate shoes (waterproof boots are perfect). The trail is mostly out in the open, so wear sunscreen and long sleeves if you are sensitive to the sun or wind! There are no restrooms at the trailhead.|
|Water for Horses:||no|
|Access and Parking:||The Zion Road entrance provides parking for the Blue Mash Nature Trail (hikers only). Parking for the Shared Use Trail Circuit is provided along Md 108.|
|Download GPX file.||A GPX file is a GPS exchange format file in the format of an XML file. You can upload it to fitness tracking and mapping sites such as Strava, Gaia GPS or Endomondo, then use the matching app to load it into your smartphone and take it with you on your ride.|
|Download KML file.||A KML file is a file format used to display geographic data in an Earth browser such as Google Earth. KML uses a tag-based structure with nested elements and attributes and is based on the XML standard. Get Google Earth free here.|
Created with AllTrails.com. Page last updated: January 08, 2018.