We have a new book in the Maryland Reference collection. New to us, it was actually published in 2001.
MD-R 598.29752 BIRDER A birder's guide to Montgomery County, Maryland published by the Montgomery County Chapter of the Maryland Ornithological Society.
Whether you set out to find birds, identify trees, exercise in lovely surroundings or just love chipmunks, this is a useful book. It is organized by location, specific places that are particularly good for looking and listening.
One of these is the Sligo Creek Stream Valley Trail. But the particular area they describe is not the part that winds through Takoma Park, but the section north of University. Here you may find Baltimore Orioles in summer and all sorts of other treats - the habitant is a mix of ponds, old fields and woods. You can get to it by hiking up the trail of course, or drive up Sligo Creek Parkway, turn right on University, left at the next light onto Arcola, and again left at the next light into the Kemp Mill shopping area. Park somewhere at the back and look for a trail head.
The 10.2-mile paved surface portion of the Sligo Creek Trail, was designated a National Recreation Trail in 2006.
Another area described in the book A birder's guide to Montgomery County, Maryland, is the 650 acre Rachel Carson Conservation Park. Did you know she lived in Montgomery County and wrote Silent Spring here? Her land was near Sunrise, which is at the intersection of Georgia Avenue (Md 97) and New Hampshire. You can find directions in the book. Please note: conservation parks do not have bathrooms or drinking water. No playgrounds or trains either.
This park contains part of the planned Rachel Carson Greenway Trail. Two other sections are currently open: The Underground Railroad Experience Trail in the Quaker area of Sandy Spring and the Northwest Branch Stream Valley Park Trail which actually comes within a couple of miles of Takoma Park ... It crosses Piney Branch Road just before the intersection with New Hampshire Avenue. This trail system goes north to Wheaton Regional Park, near the Brookside Nature Center, and south into the Prince George's County Anacostia Tributary Trail System.
More natural history in our Maryland Reference section:
MD-R 581 BOYD A flora of the Sligo Valley in Montgomery and Prince George [sic] counties, Maryland
Md-R 581 SALISBU The plants of Sligo Creek Park
599 PARADIS Mammals of Maryland
MD-R 574 SHOSTEC Rock Creek watershed habitat survey and inventory of fauna and flora Montgomery County, Maryland This one also has snippits of local history.