Patapsco Valley State Park: Glen Artney

5120 South Street
Halethorpe, MD 21227

This area is within the southern end of Patapsco Valley State Park. The primary entrance is located off of South Street in Baltimore County. Three distinct areas are featured in this section of the park.

Avalon, once home of the Avalon Nail and Iron Works, has only a few remains of the bustling mill town that once dotted the shores of the Patapsco River. Today, this section of the park has large picnic shelters, playgrounds, and access to trails that travel through the river valley as well as up and out of the valley. The Avalon Visitor center is also found in this section of the park – open on weekends April – October this small visitor center is housed in one of the only remaining structures from the village that supported the Avalon Iron works. You travel through Avalon to reach the Orange Grove area.

Orange Grove is one of the most scenic areas of Patapsco, once the home of the village of Orange Grove, a mill town that supported the flour mill on the Baltimore County side of the river. A swinging bridge similar to the one that spanned the river in the 1800’s and early 1900’s crosses the river today connecting guests to the popular Grist Mill Trail. This area provides access to picnic shelters and picnic sites, as well as access to several trails located in this section of the park. A short walk up the remains of River Road follows along the river to the site of Bloede Dam. Bloede Dam was an engineering feat of the 20th century. It is the first hydroelectric dam in the U.S. where the turbines were located inside the hollow core of the dam. Today, this dam no longer generates electricity. Its interior turbines have been removed. (Due to the dangers in the area surrounding the dam, the dam is posted as a no trespassing area for 300 feet above and below the dam.)

Glen Artney is located on the Baltimore County side of the river and is the home of Lost Lake, once a feeder pond for the mill race that powered the Iron Works down river. As you travel through the tunnel under the railroad tracks you enter the Glen Artney picnic area. Once this area of the park was set aside for camping, after the flood of 1972, this area hosted picnic facilities, boasting small intimate shelters, playgrounds and access to trails such as Soapstone, and Grist Mill. Miles of trails flow through these three areas, taking the hiker on a journey that features stunning vistas, hidden treasures of the past, babbling brooks, pleasing waterfalls, and a sense of wilderness that is within steps of the suburbs of Baltimore.

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