River Hill does not have a lake, but it was supposed to have one – the largest one planned for Columbia. It was nixed by the Army Corp of Engineers and as a result, and with plenty of lobbying by Al Geis, we have a wonderful natural resource called the Middle Patuxent Environmental Area – all 1000 acres of it complete with 5 plus miles of trails!
River Hill is also developed on what once was the River Hill Farm, a 450 acre game preserve operated by the Rouse Company from 1964 through the 1970s. This was a farm where quail, pheasant, and ducks were raised and released for dog hunting trials and practice. It was a popular sportsman site for many years. Now all that is left are the names of neighborhoods like Pointer’s Run and Pheasant Ridge.
In addition to the Middle Patuxent which is a beautiful river, there is Cricket Creek that flows through this area prior to joining the Middle Patuxent.
I will be leading a walk for the Columbia Association at 10 am on Oct. 15th along some of the more picturesque paths in River Hill. We will be meeting at the Neighborhood Center and pool. Our main goal for this walk is to gain a sense of the diverse forests, early successional to mature, and plants, birds, insects, vines (fox grapes), and animals along the way. We will also be crossing Cricket Creek twice and will stop and discuss numerous other historical and natural features along the way.
Take-a-way: Come out for a 90 minute walk and see the late summer to fall colors, wildlife, and vegetation common to this area.