The fourth of July weekend celebration kicks off with a Welcome Party and Parade of Tall Ships at the Annapolis City Dock on July 2. The public is invited to welcome Pride of Baltimore IIWilma Lee, and Providence. On Saturday and Sunday tours of the ships will be available throughout the day and on Saturday, July 3 there will be a Conversations with the Captains talk at Susan Campbell Park. Fireworks are a 9:00 pm on the 4th. There will be an information booth at Annapolis City Dock from Friday afternoon at 4:00 pm until Sunday at 8:00 pm for tour tickets and info. More information.
The Western Maryland Scenic Railroad is back in action and now offering five different ways to enjoy a train ride: Standard Coach, Deluxe Coach, First Class Dome, and First Class Lounge, and you can now enjoy the breeze as you head up the mountain in the brand new Open Air Car. Details on the different travel options here and complete schedule here.
Celebrate the coming of age of Baltimore’s only documented nesting bald eaglets! Hone your skills in bird ID when you try to catch a glimpse of the juvenile bald eagles that call Masonville Cove home. Enjoy nature exploration and free, family-friendly activities. July 1, 10:00 am, Masonville Cove, Baltimore. Registration and more information.
Hoffler Creek is offering a class to help you learn basic paddle strokes, the use of paddle floats, simple rescues, kayak re-entry, and wet exits. This free class is taught by ACA certified kayak instructor Mike Reiss. June 26, 10:00 am to 4:00 pm; Hoffler Creek Wildlife Preserve, Portsmouth, VA. More information and registration.
Potomac Conservancy sat down with former U.S. Canoe Slalom Olympic Team's Ashley Nee and International Whitewater Hall of Fame member Risa Shimoda to hear about how they deal with fear, being women of marginalized communities in a traditionally male-dominated sport, and all the rapids that come their way. These world-class women were also asked for their advice for paddlers of all genders, races, and backgrounds. Watch How to Become a Potomac River Paddling Pro.
One of America's greatest comeback stories, the bald eagle soars free over the Potomac. This Caledon State Park tour begins with a brief talk on the biology and history of the eagle and why so many can be found at Caledon. At the river, watch eagles as they soar and perch over the shoreline. $19 for a solo kayak, $25 for a tandem kayak. Must be at least 16+ for a solo kayak and 8+ (accompanied by an adult) for tandem kayak. July 4, 2:00 pm to 4:30 and July 29, 9:00 am to 11:30 am; Caledon State Park, King George, Virginia.
At 9-12 inches long, with a 20-24-inch wingspan, the American Kestrel is North America’s littlest falcon. Join the Maryland Department of Natural Resources to learn about these amazing little falcons and the research efforts going on to try and help their declining populations. This meeting will be held on Zoom and a temporary recording will be provided to all registrants. A live transcript will be available via Zoom. June 30, 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm. More information and registration.
The Annapolis Maritime Museum’s Wilma Lee is one of only a few remaining Chesapeake Bay Skipjacks. Public cruises are available from April through October and include an opportunity to view the Wednesday Night Races, fireworks, trips to Thomas Point Lighthouse, sunset cruises, and a chance to experience Annapolis and the Chesapeake Bay like never before on a guided two-hour heritage cruise. More information and reservations.
Feature of the Week
A Cool, Green Oasis
Just 30 miles south of Washington, DC, the fragrant woods and trickling streams of Prince William Forest Park have welcomed generations of campers, hikers, bikers and nature lovers. The backbone of the 15,000-acre park is the scenic drive that provides access to 37 miles of hiking trails. Three miles of the park's Scenic Drive are a dedicated bike lane, ideal for beginning bicyclists. You won’t want to miss the Geology Trail that leads to a dam carved out of ancient volcanic rocks of the Precambrian Age. The Pine Grove picnic area and shady trails make Prince William Forest Park a great mid-summer destination. Read more about what you might experience on a visit to Prince William Forest Park.

Featured Tips
Cyclists enjoying the High Bridge Trail, a very popular multi-use rail trail conversion in Virginia.
Would You Like a 48-Mile Multi-Purpose Trail in the Shenandoah Valley?
Of course, who wouldn’t? The Virginia Department of Transportation and the Department of Rail and Public Transportation are partnering with the Department of Conservation and Recreation to determine the feasibility of doing just that in the counties of Rockingham, Shenandoah and Warren. Take the online survey and lend your support! (You do not have to be a Virginia resident). More information about the project.

Head out on the water and learn firsthand the experiences of Captain John Smith's Voyage on NOAA's Chesapeake Bay interpretive Buoy System. CBIBS provides real time weather and environmental information, as well as a glimpse into living Chesapeake Bay History. You can also download the app for your Android or iPhone from the website. Note: some buoys may be offline with no data currently available.

Take a virtual tour of the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail from your computer or mobile device! To help you plan your trip before you go, the Chesapeake Conservancy partnered with Terrain360 to bring you virtual tours of the trail’s great rivers. Sit back and virtually explore the Elk, James (sponsored by the James River Association), Nanticoke, Northeast, Patapsco, Patuxent, Potomac, Rappahannock, Sassafras, Susquehanna, and York rivers. Check out some of the Chesapeake’s special places like Werowocomoco, Fones Cliffs, Baltimore’s Inner Harbor and Mallows Bay. We hope to eventually bring you a virtual tour of the entire Chesapeake Trail! Explore the Chesapeake's great rivers on our website.

A Note About COVID-19 and the Chesapeake Bay Watershed
Help stop the spread of COVID-19 and follow all current directives from your governor and local health officials about wearing face masks and physical distancing.
Chesapeake Trips and Tips is a partnership publication of National Park Service Chesapeake Gateways and Chesapeake Conservancy.
Connect with us on social media
Open the link above and use it to
forward to a friend!