Saturday, 1/4: Gwynns Falls Trail

posted Jan 2, 2014, 9:20 AM by Alex Fuller   [ updated Jan 3, 2014, 6:36 PM ]

This week we're running on Gwynns Falls Trail, a hidden gem right here in Baltimore city. Our heroic half-marathoners will add one mile to make 9, and our fearless full-marathoners will add not one, not two, but three miles to make 16.

Start Location

We'll meet at 8:00 am at the Park & Ride Lot at I-70 and Security Boulevard. If you're coming from central Baltimore, take 40 W to Cooks Lane and then look for the Park & Ride sign.


THIS ONE IS EASY TO GET LOST. So I highly recommend you print out and carry the map or the turn-by-turn directions (below). Or if you're a medical student, memorize both and be prepared for a quiz.

  • From the parking lot, follow the trail as it turns north and passes over a bridge to Franklintown Rd.
  • Follow Franklintown Road until Gwynns Falls trail enters the woods on your left (about 0.5 mi).
  • Stay on the trail, go down the switchbacks, and continue as it follows Franklintown Rd.
  • Soon after 1.5 miles you'll cross a bridge and hit more switchbacks. Keep right.
  • Shortly before 2 miles you'll hit a fork before another bridge. Stay left and follow the trail to cross over the river soon after.
  • At 2.4 miles you'll take a left and start heading north when the trail hits a closed-off road, soon after crossing another bridge.
  • Stay on this road until you hit Windsor Mill Road. Take a right, cross the bridge, and keep right to head back into the woods.
  • Follow the trail for another half mile until it intersects another trail. Do not turn, keep going straight (3.65 miles).
  • Continue on the trail, through the 4-mile mark. At 4.45 miles there is a hairpin turn and you'll now be running along Morris Road. This is the turnaround for the half-marathoners.
  • The trail will take you back to the city along one sharp descent as you hit Franklintown Rd again. Take a left to stay eastbound.
  • Follow the trail as it runs southeastward until you hit a baseball field. Turn right to run along the perimeter and follow the river.
  • At mile 6, you'll pass underneath a railroad bridge as you cross Baltimore St. Make your way to the other side of the street to pick up the trail again.
  • Next you'll hit Frederick Ave. Make a right, cross over to the other side, and take a left as you clear the bridge to arrive at Gwynns Falls Park.
  • The full marathoners will turn around a mile 8. There's a water fountain at the park, but no guarantees it works.


  • The forecast for Saturday morning is a whopping 14 degrees, so dress warmly.
  • Full-marathoners will want food along the way. Carry some energy gels, nuts, or your preferred running snack.
  • Sign up for carpooling here.
Happy New Year!