Established in 1935, this park was originally planned to provide recreational camps for federal employees; one of the camps later acquired national fame as the Presidential mountain retreat, Camp David.
Public access attractions in this forested park include 25 miles of hiking and nature trails, a bridle trail, picnicking, camping, fly-fishing, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. A rock climbing permit is issued for Wolf Rock; all other areas within the park are closed to rock climbing and rappelling. Climbing helmets are required.
The year-round Catoctin Mountain Park Visitor Center interprets the area's cultural history, including the local charcoal industry and farming, at a small exhibit area. This area provides outstanding scenic vistas of the countryside which can be enjoyed from the roads, which are open all year, however, portions of Park Central Road and Manahan Road are closed in the winter. The park is closed on winter federal holidays.