Attraction magazine has partnered with the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Office and Chesapeake Conservancy to help readers find their next adventure. Each month, we’ll feature a new place from their helpful website, FindYourChesapeake.com. There, you can also sign up for an e-newsletter, Trips and Tips, that delivers fresh ideas to your inbox each week.
Ready to try something new? At FindYourChesapeake.com, also find expert advice on experiences like birdwatching, fishing, camping, and hiking. Their team also developed content to help people explore the Chesapeake virtually so folks can stay safe at home during the pandemic.
This month, the spotlight is on Trap Pond State Park, located just east of Laurel, Delaware. The park is home to the northern-most, naturally occurring, stand of bald cypress trees, making it an incredibly beautiful fall destination. So beautiful, in fact, that FindYourChesapeake features an entire photo gallery at www.findyourchesapeake.com/trip-ideas/article/experiencing-trap-pond-state-park of Trap Pond’s autumn splendor.
But Trap Pond truly makes a great destination any time of year, whether you go to experience fall foliage, fresh winter snow, spring frog calls, or summer nesting songbirds. If you go, be sure to stop by the Baldcypress Nature Center. Designed to reflect the rustic nature of the park and Civilian Conservation Corps influence, the center’s large windows facing the pond provide an excellent place for visitors to view wildlife, with spotting scopes provided. The exhibits include an 18-foot replica bald cypress tree, 500-gallon floor aquarium, a waterfall feature showcasing the fish species found at Trap Pond, and a virtual pontoon tour of the pond.
Trap Pond has a well-rounded fish population, including Bluegill, Chain Pickerel, Crappie, Sunfish, Pickerel, Smallmouth Bass, and Largemouth Bass. Birdwatching is a popular activity, and the observant hiker may spot a Great Blue Heron, owl, hummingbirds, warblers, Bald Eagle, or the elusive Pileated Woodpecker. There are also more than 10 miles of hiking/biking trails.
Described as “the most scenic campground in Delaware,” the park’s peaceful campground has tent sites, RV sites, cabins, and yurts. A great way to “immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of the cypress swamp” is to take the park’s one-hour guided tour aboard the 28-foot pontoon boat. Tours are available by appointment, which you can book online at https://delawarestateparks.reserveamerica.com/tourDetails.do?contractCode=DE&tourId=118808&tourDate=Fri+Oct+08+2021&numberOfTicketsSearched=1&_ga=2.226344730.1898198537.1633444704-944814246.1631654783.
November programs include a Bird Walk on November 6 (call 302-875-5163 with questions); a Fall Wagon Ride on November 13 and 20 (call 302-761-6963 with questions), and a Holly Hike on November 18 (call 302-875-5163 with questions). View all Delaware State Parks events at https://destateparks.com/Programs.
Map of the Trap Pond State Park trails and facilities. https://destateparks.com/wwwroot/maps/trap-pond/TrapPond2017.pdf
Experiencing Trap Pond, by Michael Weiss. www.findyourchesapeake.com/trip-ideas/article/experiencing-trap-pond-state-park