Conowingo Dam, Port Deposit and Bainbridge are worth a visit

The Conowingo Dam is located about 40 miles from Baltimore City.

Think seriously about turning that television off on a Saturday and Sunday afternoon and getting into your car and traveling north on Belair Road, (Route 1), to check it out. You will eventually cross the Susquehanna River via the dam. Just before you get to the dam, however, on the right hand side, there’s a road which meanders around a little, that will take you down to the shoreline. You will love the view from this location, looking west at the dam’s many flood control gates.

Plenty of parking and bathroom facilities are available at this site. Fishermen and women love this special spot as do the serious shutterbugs looking to capture a photo of more than a hundred species of beautiful birds. This includes the most popular birdie of them all – the magnificent Eagle.

Looking Toward the Two Bridges
Looking toward the Tydings & Hatem Bridges.

On the northern side of the dam, you will find Route 222. One of my fave roads in all of Maryland. Try it and you will find out why. Go east on it for a few miles and you will be in the delightful waterfront town of Port Deposit.

Stop and get out of your car and walk around. It’s only a few blocks long, but it’s steeped in Maryland history. Since Port Deposit is located down river from the dam, when the Susquehanna occasionally overflows, it can get flooded. It’s very vulnerable because it also sits mostly at the river’s level. You can see both the J. Millard Tydings and the Thomas J. Hatem bridges from its shoreline. Port Deposit is also a great place to have lunch or dinner.

Just up the road from Port Deposit, on a hillside bluff, once stood a US Naval Training Center – Bainbridge. It is now hidden from view by a green forest of overgrown weeds and bushes. It closed its doors in 1975. Its remnants, some say, look like a “ghost town.”

The Bainbridge NTC Memorial
The Bainbridge Memorial

It is no longer open for visitors. Many Marylanders, beginning in 1942, during WWII, took their basic training at Bainbridge. This included, in the mid-50s, my late brother, Richard P. Hughes, Jr. He always spoke fondly of that experience.

To learn more about the Conowingo Dam, Port Deposit and Bainbridge, go here

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