Formerly Purse State Park, now known as the Purse Area part of the Nanjemoy Wildlife Management Area managed by Myrtle Grove WMA. It is located on the Potomac River on Wades Bay. Purse is a wooded undeveloped area that is used for hunting, bird watching, fishing and fossil hunting. Parking is located off of Maryland Route 224 across from a .25 mile trail leading to the waterfront.
Hunters are limited to 10 in the area at any given time. The sign-in box for hunters is located next to the parking area. Purse has one permanent waterfowl blind that is available on a first come first serve basis. Waterfowl hunting is at its best during the final part of the season.
Fossil hunting has become a popular activity at Purse. Fossilized sharks teeth, bones and shell fragments are often found at low tide in the rocks and sand along the waters edge. Check the tides before you come. At high tide there is very little beach available. There are a couple of unmarked, hunter created trails on the same side of the road as the parking area that bird watchers enjoy walking. These trails meander through a forested area and along the edge of a small wetland. Note These trails are not marked and you should come prepared with map and compass when using unmarked trails.
Fishermen will need a Bay Sport Tidal Fishing License to fish this area. Wades Bay is a great fishing location for carp, large mouth bass, white perch and many other fish species. During the summer months Wades Bay tends to fill with submerged aquatic vegetation often making fishing a challenge.