The Lonely Goatherd

Yesterday Mike and I went up to Fair Hill to go hiking in one of the Maryland Park Service's best kept secrets. Our stop was just down the road from one of my favorite places - Milburn Orchards in Elkton, Maryland. It is an autumnal wonderland for kids and adults alike. With a pumpkin patch, apple picking, and every other kind of pick-your-own fruits and vegetables imaginable available spring through fall, this place is a locavores' dream. There are also tons of games, corn mazes, and other outdoor adventures to be had for the younger ones in your clan. A market sporting fresh-made apple cider donuts, seasonal baked goods, piping hot apple cider, and farm-fresh produce makes this a great stop for pantry essentials after some fall fun.

My favorite part of the whole orchard affair, however, is the petting zoo of sorts. Chickens, pigs, and a calf or two are all available for viewing and/or petting. The best part of all - the goats. This place is like a goat fortress. I have never seen so many of these animals in one place in my life! In all shapes, sizes, colors, and ages, the goats run around, begging for food, play fighting, and traveling around the goat playground where they live. Here are just a few photographs from this most recent visit, as well as a few old ones, to give you a better idea of the wonder and intrigue of this goat paradise!

Ramps, slides, and ladders for the goats to climb

This unbelievably large pig used to be one of the sights to see a Milburn. He is unfortunately no longer there, but he was quite a sight to see in his lifetime.

Begging - typical goat behavior.

One of the most endearing of the little guys.

Standard goat behavior - taking it head to head.

These sweet little things wanted all the corn they could get. We were real cheap and were just picking up spare kernels all over the ground to feed them until a generous orchard patron gave us an ear of corn to use. I don't know if he pitied our efforts or just didn't feel like taking the time to remove all the kernels himself.

The poor little guy kept getting trampled by the older folk whenever we tried to give him a few kernel. Mike and I tried to distract the greedy guys so we could feed this one, but they were smarter than we gave them credit for. 

Goat pen, complete with chicken wire and dog house.

I still can't believe that this contraption is here for goats to walk on at a place of kid's entertainment. I just have this picture in my mind's eye of a goat falling from these ramps 20 feet in the air and the poor little children witnessing the whole thing. Luckily, I haven't heard of any such accident yet.

This place always makes me think of "The Lonely Goatherd" song from The Sound of Music. Yodeelay yodeelay yodeelay heehoo!


  1. This is a lovely place to bring the family. The last pic of the goats walking 20 feet up is really unbelieveable! I have never seen anything like this before. Thank you for dropping by my blog. Nice to have you as my follower. I'm following you too. Will be back visiting again. Have a nice day!

  2. Thanks for visiting and following... I'll be stopping by again soon!

  3. Those goats are so funny way up there! I'd be a little bit apprehensive about walking underneath them though. :P


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