Maryland State Park Policies - Statewide

Alcohol Policy and Frequently Asked Questions

To maintain and ensure a safe, family-oriented outdoor recreation experience for all park guests, the Maryland Park Service regulates the consumption of alcohol in State Parks. This policy has been adopted in the interest of all park patrons to maintain the family atmosphere of State Parks while still allowing for the appropriate consumption of alcoholic beverages under a special permit process.​

Click here for the complete policy.​


Electric Bicycle Policy

The operation of electric bicycles is permitted in all State Park areas where motorized vehicles are allowed, e.g. interior public-use roads, parking lots, etc. Except as described below, electric bicycles are prohibited on State Park trails and other areas not designated for motorized vehicles, regardless of trail width or surface (paved, gravel, natural surface).

Class 1 (only) electric bicycles are permitted on the Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail and the Western Maryland Rail Trail. On the two permitted rail trails, Class 1 electric bicycles are regulated the same as all other bicycles, and are subject to all applicable bicycle rules and regulations regarding operation and safety equipment.

As per § 11-117.1 of the Transportation Article, Annotated Code of Maryland, a Class 1 electric bicycle is equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling and ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches a speed of 20 miles per hour.


Firewood PolicyCampfire at a state park

Due to the potential threat of the Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), and other invasive beetles, the Maryland Department of Natural Resources has prohibited the importation of personal firewood into all department owned and managed properties. Please do not bring firewood with you when visiting a Department of Natural Resources Property/Park. Click here for the complete policy.


Park visitor using metal detectorMetal Detecting Policy

Relic Collecting, Treasure Hunting, and Use of Metal Detectors

It is the policy of the Maryland Park Service to safeguard the archaeological resources under its care. Digging in search of buried relics or treasures, the removal of any prehistoric or historic artifacts, and the use of metal detectors (with some exceptions) within the boundaries of lands, beaches, or under waters controlled by the Maryland Park Service is strictly prohibited without a permit from the Office of Archaeology, Maryland Historical Trust, Department of Planning. Click here for the complete policy.


Pets in Park

Maryland State Parks welcome you and your pet to enjoy the great outdoors together! We ask that you please adhere to the following guidelines in order to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience, and to protect park resources, wildlife and other visitors. In order to help keep our parks available to pets, responsible pet ownership is essential. Click here for the complete policy.


Hunting Policies

Visitors should contact the appropriate managing authority for information on public hunting opportunities on state-owned public hunting lands. Click here for the complete policy.


Photography/Filming on Park Property

Commercial photographers and film production entities must enter into an agreement and pay a service charge, as applicable, prior to using park facilities and lands for commercial photography and filming for movies, television, documentaries, and other video programming. See the complete policy and contact the effected park for more information. Click here for the complete policy.

Any photographic images or video captured / recorded on State Park property that are then sold for profit, commercial gain, or in return for any form of compensation, constitutes a “Commercial Enterprise” as per Use of State Parks regulations (COMAR 08.07.06.09).

Please contact the effected State Park for a permit. All permittees must adhere to the following basic requirements:

  1. The Permittee agrees that they and their employees or guests shall not destroy, mutilate, injure or deface any Park property and shall protect the Park’s property from any and all injury and damage; that upon failure to do so the Park reserves the right to make repairs of damage caused by the Permittee and be reimbursed by the Permittee for the expense of any repairs.
  2. The Permittee shall not permit rubbish, trash, garbage and other refuse to accumulate or to gather in or about any of the buildings, structures or work areas occupied by the Permittee except in suitable covered garbage receptacles provided by the Permittee. The Permittee shall provide for the removal of rubbish, trash, garbage and other refuse generated by the operation for which this permit is granted, at the sole cost and responsibility of the Permittee. The Permittee is prohibited from removing, relocating, modifying or attaching any item to any structure, appurtenance or other feature of the park without the specific consent of park management.
  3. The Permittee agrees that they and their employees or guests shall not interfere or disturb any activities, whether conducted by the Park or any of its affiliated organizations. Applicable entrance charges or fees must be paid upon entering the park or area of the special event / activity.
  4. If Permittee intends to engage in permitted activities before posted Park opening times or after posted Park closing times, Permittee must communicate this intent to the park management and obtain specific approval prior to entrance into the park.