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Purse State Park
Maryland State Park
This small park is situated at Wades Bay on the Potomac near Smallwood State Park. The land--about 100 acres along the river--was deeded to the State of Maryland by Dr. Purse, who specified that it was to remain in an undeveloped state. Maryland has complied, and other than a few hunting blinds, the park as no other facilities. It does have several trails that lead to the Potomac. A short hike from a small parking area leads to a sand and pebble beach that features excellent fishing in season. The park also has some of the finest Miocene fossil hunting in Charles County. Shark teeth are the most common fossil to be found as they wash up on the beach. Visitors may sift the sands for fossils, but digging or disturbing sensitive areas is not permitted. The park is open sunrise to sunset, and hunting is permitted during posted seasons.
Access to the Potomac requires a 1/4 mile portage along a trail. There is parking for approximately eight vehicles; there is no fee. The site is described on the publication Water Trails in Charles County. Select this link to download a copy of the map.