“The main trail that make up the network known collectively as the Merryman Trails.
— John Marciari
Probably the most diverse terrain, and maybe the best of the various loops around Loch Raven, this trail has it all: singletrack along the lake, a mix of singletrack and fire road up on the ridges, different types of woods, some climbs, good views, etc.
Fall Colors — Lake — River/Creek — Views — Waterfall
Many ways to add loops or extra climbs (e.g. the long climb from the reservoir up along the power line) make it easy to stretch this loop into a longer or tougher hike.
The map shows the main trails that make up the network known collectively as the Merryman Trail: trail access at Dulaney Valley Rd just south of the bridge, or at Pot Spring Rd, or at Warren Rd. There are two main routes, a singletrack closer to the lake shore and a fire road higher up on the hill, with various connecting trails between and some side trails also possible. The singletrack is flatter, but twists and turns more, whereas the fire road is straighter, but with hills.
Merryman is more challenging, and less-crowded than the trails on the southern part of Loch Raven (i.e. those accessed from the trailhead near Seminary Rd).