Maryland Heights Trail old train station
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Contrary to popular belief, Maryland Heights Trail is not located in Maryland. It’s located in Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia. Harper’s Ferry is a charming historical town less than two hours away from Washington, DC. It’s also known for being the location of the 1859 raid organized by abolitionist John Brown. If you’re a history buff, you’re going to love it. Most of the restaurants have a vintage feel to them and are pretty afforable. It’s a very small town vibe.

Maryland Heights Trail Map

Maryland Heights trail map

You can download and print this Maryland Heights Trails map or pick one up at the Welcome Center. At a minimum, screenshot this photo and save just in case.

Maryland Heights Trail and Overlook Facts

Maryland Heights Trail is recommended for moderate active hikers. There is a sharp incline at various locations, but have no fear, there are lots of rocks to rest on. The most exciting part of the trail is the Maryland Heights Overlook. From the overlook, you can see the town of Harpers Ferry,  the Potomac river, and the Shenandoah river. Along the way you’ll likely see lots of birds and if you go during fall, you’ll be gifted some of the prettiest autumn folliage on the East coast.

  • Distance: 4.5 – 6.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 9990-1788 feet
  • Duration: 2.5 – 3 hours
  • Diffulty: Moderate
  • Items of Interest: Maryland Heights Overlook, Stone Fort

How long is the Maryland Heights Trail?

The trail is about 5 miles round trip. It takes about 2 hours and 40 minutes to complete it. It’s a moderate trail with a sharp incline and semi-clearly marked trails. This doesn’t inlcude the distance between the parking lot and the trail. Make sure to bring lots of water as the trail is a short distance away from town. Most people take the shuttle bus from the parking lot to the town.

Black woman in hijab posing in front of the Maryland Heights Overlook

The Parking Lot Situation at Maryland Heights Trail

Its a $20 parking fee to enjoy the Maryland Heights Trail. The parking lot fills up very quickly on the weekend and holidays. I would recommend getting to the trail early. There is a shuttle bus from the parking lot to the trail, it leaves every 20 minutes. It’s not super busy in the morning but the ride back to the parking lot during the day is horrendus. I waited about an hour to get a seat on the bus.

Make sure to use the bathroom at the Welcome Center next to the parking lot. You can also find bathrooms at restaurants in town. There are no bathrooms on the trail.

The line for the shuttle to the parking lot for the Maryland Heights Trail at Harper's Ferry
The line for the shuttle was super long

Other Things to Do at Harper’s Ferry

Most peole visit Harper’s Ferry as a day trip but there’s so much to do! During the summer you can go rafting or kayaking. History Lovers would enjoy visiting John Brown’s Fort or the Ruins of St.John’s Episcopal Church. Here’s a few other ideas of things to do in Harper’s Ferry:

  • Ziplining at Harper Ferry’s Adventure Center
  • John Brown Wax Museum
  • Historic Leesburh Private Walking Tour
  • Antietam National Battlefield

If you enjoy hiking, Mt. Sinai should be on your bucketlist. Read all about my experience hiking the holiest mountain in Egypt here.

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