Listen for the calls of nesting ravens and warblers, watch the growth of wild geranium and black cohosh, and savor the first autumn blush in the tupelo trees. Revel, as did Frank Lloyd Wright, Benjamin Henry Latrobe, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt—among generations of other amateur naturalists—in the remarkable natural, historical, and geological treasures of Sugarloaf, the Maryland Piedmont’s only mountain.
A favored destination of nearly one-quarter million visitors each year, some 35 miles northwest of Washington, D.C., and 50 miles west of Baltimore, Sugarloaf is a National Natural Landmark and privately owned park that is open to the public year-round. In this natural history and guidebook, Melanie Choukas-Bradley presents a fascinating blend of local, natural, and historical detail that transports the reader simultaneously onto the slopes of today’s mountain and into the region’s past. Discover why prominent architects and real estate barons have found the land so compelling, why preservationists and botanists strive to protect the natural habitat of so many native species, and why families return again and again to hike, study flora and fauna, and picnic at Sugarloaf.
Choukas-Bradley lists practical information on how and when you might best enjoy a visit to the trails, wildflowers, and seasonal variations of the land. Her text is beautifully complemented by Tina Thieme Brown’s pen-and-ink illustrations.
Melanie Choukas-Bradley is the author of City of Trees: The Complete Field Guide to the Trees of Washington, D.C. and a frequent contributor to the Washington Post. Tina Thieme Brown has been a landscape artist and environmentalist for twenty years. She currently serves as campaign director for Solutions Not Sprawl, a regional alliance working to protect open space.