Access Update February 12, 2021
Please note: Finzel Preserve is currently not accessible by car due to snow. The driveway into Finzel is not plowed and may not be accessible even by 4-wheel drive. Please be respectful of our neighbors and do not block their driveways and mailboxes and observe posted speed limits.
TNC’s public preserves across Maryland remain open. We ask all visitors to observe our preserve access guidelines and follow current health and safety precautions, including guidance from the Maryland Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), including maintaining a distance of at least 6 feet from others (social distancing).
As a reminder, the preserve is open to the public during daylight hours only. Fires and littering are prohibited.
Thank you for helping us in our efforts to protect our visitors’ health and well-being.
About Finzel Swamp
A window into ice ages past, Finzel Swamp is located in a frost pocket, an area where the surrounding hills capture moisture and cold air that conspire to create a landscape more reminiscent of habitat found much further north in Canada.
Thanks to a partnership with aptly named Frostburg State University, the Conservancy is learning more about this unique natural treasure. In 2012, a group of Frostburg students set up a weather monitoring station at the preserve. This station allows the student researchers to monitor weather conditions in relation to water levels and ultimately gather data on climate-change impacts to the area.
Why TNC Selected This Site
In addition to the shrub swamp, the preserve contains three other distinct plant communities, and is the headwaters to the Savage River. The mountain peatlands created by this rare mix of altitude, temperature, and precipitation are home to a spectacular range of plants, birds, and mammals.
The Central Appalachians harbor the most diverse community of salamanders in the world, and pristine Finzel Swamp provides a perfect sanctuary: varied habitat, moisture, and clean water.