Please check our main Recreation & Parks webpage for all updates. 

Please call our inclement weather lines about the status of camps, programs, events, facilities, and parks:

park_MPEA_River at Shadow Lane

Middle Patuxent Environmental Area

Address: 5795 Trotter Road, Clarksville, MD 21029

Phone: 410-313-4726

Hours: Sunrise to Sunset, or as posted 

Directions: Google MapsPDF

Howard County Department of Recreation and Parks manages the 1021-acre Middle Patuxent Environmental Area (MPEA) in cooperation with the Middle Patuxent Environmental Foundation. This natural area is home to a diversity of wildlife, including an impressive list of about 150 species of birds, over 40 species of mammals, and numerous amphibians, reptiles, fishes, butterflies, plants and other wildlife. The primary components of the MPEA’s mission are natural resource conservation, environmental education, research, and passive recreation. The area is managed using ecosystem management concepts to restore and protect the diversity of communities found in this region. Five and one-half miles of hiking trails, with two interpretive nature trail brochures, give visitors an opportunity to enjoy and learn about the area. 

Ongoing natural resource management projects in the MPEA include meadow habitat restoration, natural resource inventories (bird surveys, vegetation surveys, etc), forest management, deer population management, stream water quality monitoring, and the volunteer program. The objective of the MPEA volunteer program is to involve members of the community in many aspects of the MPEA’s management. Volunteers can become involved in the development and maintenance of our trail system, help fight the invasive exotics that threaten our native species, study the diverse flora and fauna communities, participate in habitat management projects, and/or help develop educational programs.

To find out more about MPEA programs and management activities, contact MPEA Natural Resources Manager, Cheryl Farfaras at 410-313-4726 or email

Want to volunteer? See under "Get Involved" in the menu below.

2020 Managed Deer Hunts

This year’s managed hunts will include a combination of bow and shotgun, and will take place from dawn until noon.  Sharpshooting does not take place in the MPEA. 


The Deer Management Schedule for 2020 for the Middle Patuxent Environmental Area is :

Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Wednesday, October 28 2020

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

If you have any questions about the Department’s Deer Management Program, please call at 410-313-1675.

Park Information

Rules and Regulations

To Report a Park Concern

To report damage or park concerns, leave a message on the Department's hot-line, 410-313-DIRT (3478). For emergencies dial 911.

Park Rules

The purpose of these regulations is to provide a safe and peaceful use of County parks and park land; for recreational and educational benefit and enjoyment; and for the protection and preservation of the property, facilities and natural resources of the County. Park land and recreation programs conducted on park land are open for use by all members of the public regardless of race, religion, creed, color, sex, national origin, or disability. Click on the links below for more information about our regulations.

Howard County Code

Title 19 - Recreation & Parks Regulations

Things to Remember  

  • Help to keep your parks beautiful -- please take your trash and recyclable items home. Take only pictures