Prince George's County Department of Parks and Recreation
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Patuxent River Park

16000 Croom Airport Road
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772
301-627-6074; TTY 301-699-2544

Hours of Operation

Sunday-Saturday  8 am-dusk (call park office for seasonal closing time) 
Visitors Center   8 am-4 pm 

2015 Park Permit Stickers On Sale NOW!

This year there will be a fee for EACH sticker and EACH permit sticker will have a unique number.  You will have to pay for each additional sticker that you would like for your additional vehicles.  Permit fees have not increased in over 20 years and some jurisdictions are selling permits at $40 each.  Please call the park office if you have any questions regarding the changes to the park permit sales.

The 2015 camping and pavilion rental season begins on January 2nd.

We will use the process described below for the first day of rentals on Friday, January 2, 2015:

  • Customers will be assisted on a first come, first serve basis.
  • We will begin bookings at 8 am starting with the first person who walks through the Visitor Center door and continuing in order between those who are here in person and those who call in on the telephone.
  • Each individual may book one event/weekend  and then they will have to get back in line in order to book other events.
  • Please have several dates in mind for your reservation, so that if your first choice is gone you will have other options quickly available.
  • The following dates are already booked with Park Events: June 4, June 13, June 26-28, September 15 & 16, October 16-19, and November 7.
  • PLEASE NOTE: Canoe Camp, Selby's Camp and Patuxent Water Trail Camp site Reservations will start on FEBRUARY 2, 2015.

The Patuxent River

The Patuxent River was first recognized by the State of Maryland as a valuable natural resource, worthy of protection, in the Patuxent River Watershed Act of 1961.

This legislation declared that "flood prevention, land conservation, erosion control and protection from urban development within the watershed is a public benefit and conducive to the public health, safety and welfare."

In 1968, the river was designated one of Maryland's scenic rivers.

In response to the legislation, M-NCPPC developed a master plan "to preserve and protect the very unique natural and historical resources... while providing compatible recreational activities for the public."

The Commission embarked on a land acquisition program with funding principally from Program Open Space, Maryland's nationally-acclaimed land preservation program.

In Prince George's County, the Commission owns more than 7,000 acres of parkland that protect the natural resources and preserve the scenic character of the river.

Special Events


April 4, 2015

big bubba's fishing rodeo

Saturday, May 16, 2015
Fishing is a great way to get kids outdoors, learn about nature, and just have fun! All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Several properties are open for public use including:

The park offers a wide range of outdoor recreational opportunities including camping, hiking, bicycling, horseback riding, fishing, hunting, boating, kayaking, canoeing, archaeology and nature study.

In addition, there is the Patuxent Rural Life Museums , a collection of late 19th century and early 20th century buildings and historic structures dedicated to preserving the rural heritage of southern Prince George's County.

The park provides canoe and kayak rentals , facilities for camping and picnics , guided educational programs , and special programs and events for people of all ages. Reservations are required for most activities.

Boat Ramps

  • Three public boat ramps are located on the Patuxent River in Prince George's County. Restrictions apply and parking is limited.
  • A special use permit is required for all vehicles towing trailers.
  • Permits are available on an annual or daily basis.
  • Permits can be purchased at the Visitors Center (Jug Bay Natural Area). Call 301-627-6074.
  • Parking is on a first-come, first-served basis. Once lots are filled, access will be denied until space becomes available.
  • No overnight use permitted.
  • Fuel facilities not available.
  • Personal watercraft (PWC) are only permitted to launch at Clyde Watson Boating Area (CWBA)

Jackson's Landing

Follow park road past Visitors Center to the bottom of the hill. Parking limitation - 12 vehicles with trailers; 12 additional vehicles.

Selby's Landing

Follow Croom Airport Road (past park entrance road) to dead end, turn left and follow road to designated area. Parking limitation - 25 vehicles including vehicles with trailers.
WARNING: This is a short ramp with a drop off at the end.

Clyde Watson Boating Area

Follow Croom Road about 10 miles south of Jug Bay and turn left on Magruder's Ferry Road. Entrance is on the right. Parking limitation - 15 vehicles with trailers and 25 additional vehicles. Personal watercraft are permitted to launch with limitations.

  1. Access limited to seven (7) at any time.
  2. Access south of boat ramp only
  3. PWC's prohibited along shoreline in posted area.
Patuxent River Park Club Opportunities
The Basket Bunch meets once a month to share ideas and learn how to collect natural materials and fashion them into beautiful and functional baskets.

Members receive a monthly newsletter with details for the coming month's project.
Membership Fees
 Residents:  $25/year
 Non-Residents:   $30/year 
*Residents are those who reside either in Prince George's or Montgomery Counties. 


Live Osprey Cam

Ospreys are fish eating migratory birds that return every year from South America to nest along the Chesapeake Bay and the Patuxent River. The park has erected artificial nest platforms along the river and monitors their activity throughout the season.

The male returns first and begins nest building using twigs and branches. When the female returns, the mating ritual begins. The young are born in May. By August, they are ready to leave the nest, separate from their parents and begin the annual migration back to South America.

Our Osprey Cam is located at Jug Bay Natural Area near the boat ramp at Jackson's Landing. The best time for viewing is early morning or late afternoon when the osprey bring fish back to the nest.
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