Mt. Pleasant

Howard County Conservancy

10520 Old Frederick Road, Woodstock, Maryland 21163
  • Size: 232 acres
  • Habitat: Fields, hedgerows, small woodlands, streams, two small natural wetlands and one small, artificial wetland. The yard around the historic farmhouse has mature trees of a variety of species.
  • Best Months: February (American Tree Sparrows), April–May, September–November.
  • Coverage Time: 2–3 hours.
  • Trails/Paths: Four miles of mowed-grass paths.
  • Notable Birds: Specialties include Wild Turkey and American Kestrel year-round, Savannah Sparrow and American Tree Sparrow in winter, American Woodcock and Lincoln's Sparrow in migration, Yellow-breasted Chat, Grasshopper Sparrow, and Eastern Meadowlark spring through fall. Rarities are Ring-necked Pheasant, Northern Bobwhite, Glossy Ibis, Rough-legged Hawk, Merlin, Peregrine Falcon, Black-bellied Plover (pond east of Woodstock Post Office), Upland Sandpiper, Olive-sided Flycatcher, Least Flycatcher, Philadelphia Vireo, Marsh Wren, Orange-crowned Warbler, Mourning Warbler, Clay-colored Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow.
  • Amenities: Restrooms in Gudelsky Environmental Education Center, generally only available during public hours. Gift shop. Public programs.
  • Handicapped Access: Gravel parking lot. Paths are not suitable for wheelchairs—all are mown grass with some inclines. The Gudelsky Environmental Education Center is handicapped accessible.
  • Operation and Hours: Trails open dawn to dusk seven days a week without fee. Nature center hours: Wednesday through Saturday 9:00 a.m.–3:00 p.m., closed Saturdays during winter. Fees for some programs and special events. For additional information: phone 410-465-8877, web page for The Howard County Conservancy, or email
  • Special Attractions: Butterfly Garden; Heirloom Orchard; John L. Clark Arboretum and Honors Garden; reconstructed Montjoy Barn (c. 1798, the sole surviving English-style wheat barn in Maryland); an impressive Tulip Poplar stump in front of the farmhouse (tree dated to the Revolutionary War). The original HodgePodge Lodge, the set of a nature-oriented Maryland Pubic Television program which ended in the 1970s, sits along one of the east trails.
  • Deer Hunts: Controlled deer hunts take place in the fall and winter. As this is by special permit, hunt days may be before, during, or after the public deer season in other areas. Hunts are not held on days of scheduled events. On hunt days, cones and signs are placed in the driveway entrance to indicate that the trails are temporarily closed.
Mt Pleasant thumbnail
Compilers: Kurt Schwarz and Scott Berglund

© 2009