October 2012: Brandywine Creek State Park

Wilmington, Delaware

Once a duPont family dairy farm, this spectacular swath of land became a State Park in 1965. Delaware’s first two nature preserves are located here: Tulip Tree Woods, behind the park office, and Freshwater Marsh, at the edge of Brandywine Creek. 

There are eight blazed trails totalling 14 miles on both sides of the Brandywine Creek. All are short, all are woodsy and if you can’t reach out and touch the water you are moving up or down a hill. The Hidden Pond Trail and the Indian Springs Trail each travel along the water, immerse you in the steep valley terrain and traverse the Tulip Tree Woods, where majestic tulip poplar have grown for nearly two centuries. The star walk at Thompson’s Bridge is the rugged Rocky Run Trail, winding around the closest thing to a mountain stream in
Delaware. On this trail you’ll discover fragrant stands of hemlock nestled among hardwood neighbors. Nearby, the Multi-Use Trail tags Brandywine Creek for the better part of two miles.

The stone walls that criss-cross the 850-acre park are the legacy of skilled Italian masons who crafted the barriers from locally quarried Brandywine granite - the original “Wilmington Blue Rocks.”

The main entrance is on Adams Dam Road, between Thompson’s Bridge Road (Route 92) and Rockland Road. Other parking areas are at Thompson’s Bridge and off Rockland Road, opposite Rockland Mills.