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Chimney Rock
Mountains & Rocks
Mountains & Rocks

Chimney Rock

Chimney Rock

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Maryland, United States, North America

Lat/Lon: 39.63245°N / 77.44087°W

Object Title: Chimney Rock

County: Frederick

Activities: Hiking, Bouldering

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall

Elevation: 1419 ft / 433 m


Page By: birdny

Created/Edited: Jul 19, 2007 / Nov 9, 2007

Object ID: 314020

Hits: 9130 

Page Score: 84.27%  - 18 Votes 

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Chimney Rock
Looking South
Approaching Chimney Rock
The trail

Chimney Rock with is awesome views, boulders, crevaces, and eroded stone formations is part of the ancient Appalachian Mountains that were formed 250 million years ago. Geologically speaking, these mountains are very old and worn due to erosion over time.

In the eastern half of the park at Chimney Rock and Wolf Rock, the rocks have been metamorphosed into a hard, weather-resistant rock called quartzite. This area is part of the Weverton Formation. The Weverton Formation, named for its formation near the town of Weverton, is the main ridge-making formation in the eastern mountains in Maryland. The formation is composed of quartz cemented together by a secondary, less developed quartz.

There are rattlesnakes (timber and copperheads) in the area so be careful!

Getting There

Trail Map

Trailhead: The trailhead is located in the Catoctin Mountain National Park. To reach the trailhead take route 15 towards Thurmont where you will pick up 77 West. You will see the entrance for the park approximately 2.5 miles on the right. Proceed to the Visitor Center at the intersection of Park Central Road. The trail is in the corner of the parking area. None of the trails have blazes but they are easy to follow and are well signed at all intersections.

Leaving the parking lot the trail climbs steadily. At .6 miles a trail junction comes in from the right. Take the trail to the right. Another junction is reached in .2 miles. Continue to the right or straight towards Chimney Rock. Here you will begin a long descent, sometimes rather steeply, often along large boulders. At about 1.7 miles as a junction leading to the park headquarters (where you can also start your hike). From here the trail climbs pretty quickly (roughly 700 feet in less than a mile) with a number of switchbacks. The trail levels off for a bit and then climbs again to the top where the access trail to Chimney Rock at 2.2 miles.

Red Tape

Looking West
From the top

Camping is allowed only at one of the parks camping areas. Please see here for camping details.

All other areas within the park (other than Wolf Rock) are closed to rock climbing and rappelling, including Chimney Rock.

Suggested hike

Combine this trip with Wolf Rock by continuing along the trail a short distance north. The total trip will be 4.8 miles


Chimney RockChimney Rock viewChimney RockLooking SouthChimney Rock viewChimney RockChimney Rock
Chimney RockLooking WestAnother viewChimney Rock viewBouldersApproachingSouth
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