Hammernan Beach in Gunpowder Falls State Park is one of the biggest full-service beaches on the Chesapeake Bay.
The beach is where Gunpowder River enters the Bay, and all that fresh water means its jellyfish-resistant year round.
Gunpowder Fall’s Hammerman beach is 1,500 feet of sand and swimming area. It’s divided into several sections by wood groins built to trap the sand and protect the beach. You can find a section that fits your needs.
Lifeguards are on duty from Memorial Day through Labor Day weekend, 8am-8pm. You can swim other times of the year, but it’s at your own risk.
A number of watersports are available for rent just past the swimming area, including: Kayaks, Paddle Boards, Wind Surfers, and Sailboats. It’s run by a private contractor which also offers lessons and classes.
The full-service beach house also has a concessions stand with a small restaurant/grill. It’s open Memorial Day through Labor Day. Offseason, make sure you are fully provisioned before you get into the park. There are no stores once you drive onto large peninsula.
There is a fee to get in.
Weekends and Holidays (during season):
$5 per person service charge ($7 per-person for non-Maryland residents)
Weekdays (during season):
$3 per person service charge ($5 per-person for non-Maryland residents)
$3 per-vehicle ($5 for non-Maryland residents), payment via the honor system
Be aware that if you drive out to get something, you have to pay to get back in. No refunds.
Hammerman fills up on hot summer weekends, especially on holidays, so get there early on those days.
There’s parking close to the beach, but that fills quickly. Alternative parking is available at “Chestnut” and “Dogwood” parking lots. Those are lots for picnic areas, so be prepared for a bit of a walk if you don’t get to the beach earlier enough on busy weekends.
Call the Hammerman Ranger Station at 410-335-3461 to find out if the park or beach lot if full and a closure is in effect.
Dogs are not allowed on the beach during season (Memorial Day through Labor Day). However, you can let them play on the sand and swim on a leash during off-season.