I took the REI snowshoeing basics and would like to try this, but can’t find any appropriate trails yet on AllTrails or Traillink. Something within 2 hours from Montgomery County, Maryland? Any ideas? How do you check trail conditions? Obviously you can check current and future weather for snowfall, but how do you know if there is already snowfall if you’re going to drive an hour or two for this activity? Thanks for any advice.
I've lived in Maryland my whole life, in Harford County, and the only place you can count on for reasonably consistent snow in the state would be in Garrett County. And up until this week, there hasn't been much snow anywhere in the region. Savage River State Forest, New Germany SP, Swallow Falls SP, Deep Creek Lake SP would be good places to try, if you can confirm there is snow before making he trip. Garratt County and these parks are all about a 2-1/2 - 3 hour drive from Montgomery County.
There are probably some good spots in Virginia, West Virginia, and maybe Pennsylvania, but again, all in the mountains, and all 3 or so hours away from you...unless we get lucky and get a significant snowfall event in the area. If we do, I might suggest any one of the numerous rail trails around the state, including the C&O Canal Trail, about a half-hour from Montgomery County, or the Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail (locally known as the NCR Trail) about an hour away in Baltimore County. Each parallels a river, and are very scenic.
I've often considered getting snowshoes, but the snows around here are so infrequent, that I haven't committed to the idea yet.
Good luck, and let us all know how your search and snowshoeing adventures turn out.
As a nordic skier, I am always hopeful that the MD snowfalls will amount to enough for at least one good day of local xc skiing. I imagine snowshoeing warrants a bit more snowfall than what I need for xc. I have friends that head to PA (Susquehannock State Park. Potter County) every year and usually have good snowfall. And also Crystal Lake, but those places are at least 3 hours away.