With the day off work on Veterans Day, I wanted to take the opportunity to run somewhere new as I drove back to Salisbury from the other side of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge. Thank you to the veterans who make it possible for me to enjoy exploring our area and do something I love to do — run!
I chose the Wye Island Natural Resources Management Area, where I’d never been before.
Wye Island is about 10 minutes or so off Route 50 on the Eastern Shore. I crossed a short bridge to get there, which had beautiful views. The island’s address is in Queenstown — it’s between the Chesapeake Bay Bridge and Easton.
The Wye Island NRMA website says there are six miles of trails, but I ran 5.5 miles, and I feel like I have much more to explore. I know I did retrace my steps at some points, and that number probably doesn’t include the road that you’d take to get from trail to trail. You could certainly get a long run in here.
I wasn’t sure exactly where to park, but I ended up parking by a parking sign across from Lodge Lane. There was no fee to get into the park.
I ran the direction that I’d been driving on Wye Island Road, which had a tree canopy and was pretty. I would have liked to have made it all the way to the trails marked in red on the map (the West Corner Trail, the Ferry Point Trail and the Jack-In-The-Pulpit Trail), but I also didn’t want to do a super-long run, and I’d just run the Veterans Day 10K the day before, so I’ll have to save those for another time.
I did run out to the Osage Trail, ran that short loop and out to an overlook, and then turned around to go back toward my car. My plan was to take the Holly Tree Trail back to the corner of Wye Island Road.
However, I got turned around near the Schoolhouse Woods Nature Trail and ended up repeating a section. I was getting ready to be finished with the run, so rather than find where the Holly Tree Trail continued, I took the Schoolhouse Woods Nature Trail back to the road and headed back to my car.
One tree is pointed out on the map with the label of “275+ year old Holly Tree,” so I figured I’d check that out. The tree is marked with a sign stating that it is 275+ years old, and the website says it’s 290-plus years old — of course, they wouldn’t update the sign every year.
I ran on grassy trails and less technical woodsy trails. The only part that seemed somewhat technical where I ran was the Schoolhouse Woods Nature Trail. There were also leaves all over that trail.
When I arrived, I saw a sign at a kiosk stating that there was hunting going on, and there was a sign saying orange was recommended. I wasn’t wearing orange, but I was wearing red. That could possibly blend in with leaves, but I assume that’s better than brown or green. I did see some hunters by their cars and another walking on a trail, but I never felt in danger, and I would have moved off the trail if I did.
It looked like there is no Sunday hunting (I don’t know if that could change, so be alert either way). So, a Sunday might be a nice day to enjoy these trails. Otherwise, wear orange.
I will have to check out the other trails I didn’t get to on another drive on Route 50!
I set a goal to travel to at least one new-to-me place for a run each month of 2019. Here are the other places I’ve traveled to for runs this year:
- October: York County Heritage Rail Trail
- September: Red Run Stream Valley Trail, Richmond Region
- August: New Smyrna Beach, Florida
- July: Tuckahoe State Park, Delaware & Raritan Canal State Park and Delaware Canal State Park trails
- June: Oregon Ridge Park, John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum, Benjamin Franklin Bridge
- May: Powellville, including Adkins Mill Park
- April: Assawoman Wildlife Area
- March: Chapel Branch Nature Trail
- February: Mutton Hunk Fen Natural Area Preserve, Patuxent Research Refuge North Tract
- January: Mount Vernon Trail