Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Savage River Lodge - Overview

Well, I finally got my last post written the other day about Cape May, NJ, identifying the mystery animal that I saw.  So it is time to start another little group of accounts, this one about the Savage River area of Maryland.

If I were tell you that there is a spot in Maryland that averages 160 inches of snow a year, would you believe me?  Well, it is apparently true.  There is a nice, rustic lodge in this area, and there is so much snow there that they are open for snowshoe use and cross-country (Nordic) skiing.  These are two things I have not done since I left Maine, where we used to get a lot of snow - but only about half of what Savage River gets.

We have wanted to check this place out for a long time and finally did, expecting typical lovely October weather.  What we got instead was four days (counting the five hour drive to and fro) of drizzle and rain.  But you know, one cannot control the weather, so I made the best of it.  It is  lovely area for hiking with 13 miles of trail on their property and on the adjoining Savage River State Forest, and there are lots of wildlife.

Where is this snowy place in Maryland?  Well, it is up in the "panhandle," just a few miles west of Frostburg.  I've marked it with a little purple star on the map below.  Pennsylvania is to the north, just over the Mason and Dixon line a few miles, and West Virginia is to the west and south.
 How did Savage River get it's name?  Sounds kind of scary, does it?  Well, some long time back, a group of men were lost in the area and ran out of food.  After a time, they decided to kill and eat the weakest of the bunch.  His name was Savage, and when another party came along and rescued them, Mr. Savage's life was spared.  So the named the River in his honor.  That's all pretty savage, isn't it?

I really liked this place.  It was lovely and relaxing.  And rainy.  Did I mention that it rained the whole time?  Well, rain or drizzle 95% of the time.  The other 5%, it was trying to figure out how to start raining again, and it always succeeded.  Fortunately, we took lots to read in our snug little cabin, which was in a stand of red spruce, replite with red squirrels and red-breasted nuthatches.
Inside, we had a little gas heated Franklin fireplace for warmth.  Plus, it added some nice ambiance.  The place was very comfortable.  There is no television, which some would hate for a few days, but I was fine.
In addition to the 16 cabins for guests, they are building yurts for the upcoming year, and those looked intriguing.  That is a big financial investment.

Here is the lodge itself, surrounded by fog.  It is a comfortable place to hang out it.  There is a great fireplace, as you might imagine, and a nice dining room with great food.  There also is a library (each cabin had its own selection of books as well).

I really liked the Savage River Lodge and hope to go back. The five hour drive from our home makes it difficult, of course, to go for even a three day weekend.

I took three hikes while there, plus visited Kentuck Knob in Pennsylvania, and will write about these in the upcoming days.


  1. I haven't been there yet but I'll have to get there one day soon.
    I love it up this way, though I will see what I think after this first winter!! : )
    It's another misty foggy day here. The really does come out here!! : )

  2. I liked it up there, Happyone! If you have always wanted to try cross country skiing, this would be a good place to try. Yeah, you just might see a bit more winter where you are now than your prior location. But it could be fun!