The BWI Airport is the only commercial airport in the United States to offer visitors a recreational hiker/biker trail. Portions of the trail,
most of which sit on airport property, have been opening since 1994. The 12.5-mile trail encircles the airport and is patrolled by Anne
Arundel County. This is quite likely the noisiest dog walk you will ever take - airplanes, car traffic, trains. But after awhile it all fades into white noise and becomes part of the experience of this unique trail. That said, there are pastoral refuges along the route including woodlands, pine groves and even a horse farm.For canine hikers the BWI Trail has several advantages over its rail-to-trail neighbors. Since it isn’t constrained
by a right-of-way, there is more grassy room on the shoulders for relief from the pounding of paw on asphalt (the trail is paved the entire way save for wooden boardwalks through wetlands); the trail was designed in a pleasing serpentine fashion; and there is a nice sprinkling of hills along the way. And, although few canine hikers are likely to care, the trail is a complete loop rather than an out-and back. No matter how you plan to use the BWI Trail, take along drinking water for your dog as it is scarce along the path.
The Thomas A.Dixon Jr. Aircraft Observation Area provides an ideal spot to watch the planes land directly in front of you. You won’t be able to see the rubber hit the ground here but you can see it from other spots along the trail. To get the feel of a big jet soaring directly over your head, walk down a half-mile to the east (you’ll see stop signs) and stand here. It won’t be only jets using the airport either - you can spot an occasional propeller plane as well.
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