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Appalachian Mountain Club
Local Walks/Hikes Committee

The AMC Boston Chapter Local Walks/Hikes Committee leads day hikes and nature walks year-round primarily in eastern Massachusetts and southern New Hampshire. They range in length from 3 to 20 miles over terrain which ranges from smooth and flat to rocky and hilly. A typical hike is 5 to 8 miles in length along woodland trails over rolling terrain with some hills and takes 4 to 5 hours, including lunch. The pace is usually moderate, allowing participants to socialize as they walk. Some of our hikes are hilly enough to be useful as conditioning hikes for the more rugged trails in the White Mountains or elsewhere. Dogs are not permitted on AMC Local Walks/Hikes unless explicitly stated in the hike description. Proper footwear required incl. traction gear for snow/ice.

AMC Local Walks on Twitter
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AMC Local Walks/Hikes on Instagram

To see the kinds of activities we do, go to the listing of recent walks/hikes or check out the other pages linked above and below. You can also download a PDF of all AMC Boston Chapter event listings for the next two months at http://current.amcboston.org. This may be useful now that trip listings are no longer in Outdoors magazine. To find out how to join the AMC, go to www.outdoors.org/join.

The Hiking Areas page is a compilation of over one hundred of the larger areas for day hikes out of Boston plus information on obtaining trail maps. The Photo Gallery pages contain a growing collection of photos of trail scenes from those areas and from recent walks. The Easy Walks page has a list of nearby places where there is a scenic, level walk that is easy to follow. The Nature Walks page is about what to expect from an AMC nature walk, what to bring, and where to go on your own nature and bird walks.

The Local Walks/Hikes Authors page is about the Weston conservation lands guidebook written by AMC Local Walks/Hikes leader Elmer Jones and the guidebook to plants commonly seen on walks written by AMC Local Walks/Hikes leader Hilary Hopkins.

Leadership opportunities: AMC members with an aptitude for leading group hikes and knowledge of a local hiking area are encouraged to contact the Local Walks/Hikes chairman listed below and in AMC Outdoors magazine at the beginning of the Boston chapter activities.

Website contributions: Send corrections, additions, and photos to [localwalks AT rwinters DOT com]. You can also direct any questions or concerns to this address.

Jim Loughlin, Chair, Local Walks/Hikes
Tel.: 617-923-8039

Robert Winters, Local Walks/Hikes, webmaster & trip coordinator

Amazing Outdoor Workouts: Hike (Casey Lyons, Boston Magazine, June 2012)
Get out for a walk - Fast walking, not trendy gadgets, is a key to long life (Derrick Z. Jackson, Boston Globe, Jan 8, 2011)
Advice on choosing the best hiking boots
from OutdoorGearLab

Happy Autumn!

Upcoming Local Walks ($1 for non-members...but, please, become a member!):
[Most AMC Local Walks/Hikes are "show and go" without registration. If registration is required, it will say so explicitly in the hike description. Proper footwear required incl. traction gear for snow/ice. Unless otherwise stated, you should assume each hike is at a moderate pace.]

Mon, Jan 16. Blue Hills Ponkapoag Pond, Canton. Moderate pace 5-mi. hike/snowshoe around pond, 10:30am-2:00pm. Bring lunch & water. From Rte. 93/128 exit 2A, take Rte. 138 S 0.7 mi. to Ponkapoag Golf Course lot on L. If no snow, bring traction device for boots. L Beth Mosias.

Sat, Jan 21. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Jones Forest. 9:45am-noon. Meet at the Locke School parking lot, 110 Allan Road, Billerica. Easy two hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to explore Jones Forest and the Country Club, by Shawsheen River. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sat, Jan 21. Wompatuck State Park, Hingham. 10 mile hike w/lunch at scenic pond, 9:30am-2:00pm. Bring lunch/water/hiking shoes. Rte. 3 Exit 14 to Rte. 228N toward Hingham, 4 mi. to Wompatuck sign, then R on Free St. 1.3 mi. to visitor center pkg. lot. Email if severe weather. Bring traction devices/snow shoes if snow. L Mike Tuohey.

Sun, Jan 22. Beaver Brook, Hollis, NH. 1:00pm. Come out and enjoy a winter snowshoe/hike at Beaver Brook in Hollis, NH. This hike will be approximately 2 to 2.5 hours depending on trail conditions. We will plan on hiking along beautiful Beaver Brook trail. Bring snacks/water and plan on dressing in layers. Due to winter conditions, traction devices such as yak tracks, micro spikes are required, and if the snow is deep enough we will need snowshoes. Snow/rain or severe cold weather will cancel. L Judi Barthakur.
Directions: From South on NH Route 3 Head north on NH Route 3. Take Exit 6, then turn left onto Broad Street/Route 130. Drive approximately 6 miles. Bear right at the fork and travel to the set of lights in Hollis. Turn left at the lights onto Route 122 South. Drive approximately 1 mile and turn right onto Ridge Road. The Brown Lane Barn entrance is approximately .7 miles on the right. Continue .25 miles on Ridge Road to reach the Maple Hill Farm (117 Ridge Road). Meet at the Red Yurt in parking lot.

Sat, Jan 28. Hike Beautiful Billerica - The Fields. 9:45am-noon. Meet by the tennis courts of Boys and Girls Club aka Lampson Field aka Peggy Hannon-Rizza Recreation Complex, 1 Ed Hayes Way, Billerica. Easy two hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to explore Narrow Gauge and B&M RR and Martina Gage conservation land. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sat, Feb 4. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Warren Manning. 9:45am-noon. Meet by the Manning Manse aka Jon Ryan's Pub parking lot, 56 Chelmsford Road, Billerica. Easy two hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, through Warren Manning State Forest. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sun, Feb 5. Powisett Farm, Dover. Snowshoe/walk, thru meadows, 1:00-3:00pm. Meet at grey barn. I-95/Rte. 128 Exit 16B to Rte. 109W for 1 mi., then R on Dover Rd. becomes Powisett Road. 2.5 mi. to Powisett Farm on left. Trustees of Reservation property. Rain cancels. L Jean Veigas.

Sat, Feb 11. Middlesex Fells, Winchester. Leader's Choice. Hike/snowshoe. Meet at Wedgmere RR Station (Lowell Line) 10:00am, return for 1:30pm train. Call or email Wed-Fri. to determine equipment. Bring water and lunch. From Route 3, take Church Street for 0.3 miles and turn right on Bacon Street. Continue 0.4 miles to parking lot on Mystic Valley Parkway. I-93 Exit 33 (Medford) to South Border Road. Head west 2.2 miles, then take Mystic Valley Parkway. Go 0.9 miles and turn right (Bacon Street) under tracks to parking lot on the left. Storm cancels. L Betsy Goeke.

Sat, Feb 18. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Vietnam Veterans Memorial Park. 9:45am-noon. Meet at the Vietnam Veteran's Park parking lot by the flag pole, Treble Cove Road, Billerica. Easy two hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to explore Ralph Hill SVT Conservation Area and Concord River. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sun, Feb 19. Nagog Pond & Sarah Doublet, Acton/Littleton. 9:30am-2:30pm. Meet at Grassy Hill parking lot off Nagog Hill Rd, Acton (see links below), S side of Nagog Hill Rd. From Rte. 2, exit Rte. 27 N toward Acton for 1.1mi., L Nagog Hill Rd. for 1.2mi to Grassy Pond pkg. area on L. This 7½ mi. route wanders through a portion of Acton's Nagog Hill area, hugs the shore of Nagog Pond, loops through the hilly Sarah Doublet area in Littleton where we plan to have lunch and offer an optional excursion to Fort Pond via a short spur trail. Our return covers the remaining portion of Nagog Pond. L Mark Levine.

Sun, Feb 19. Wild Wharton, Groton. 1:00pm-3:00pm. Come see this spectacular conservation area featuring beaver ponds, eskers, varied wetlands, upland forest, and hopefully lots of interesting animal tracks in the snow. Meet at the Dan Parker Road entrance on Martins Pond Rd / Rocky Hill Rd (42.6278N, 71.5234W). About 2 hours, moderate pace. L Olin Lathrop.

Mon, Feb 20. Blue Hills Ponkapoag Pond, Canton. Moderate pace 5-mi. hike/snowshoe around pond, 10:30am-2:00pm. Bring lunch & water. From Rte. 93/128 exit 2A, take Rte. 138 S 0.7 mi. to Ponkapoag Golf Course lot on L. If no snow, bring traction device for boots. L Beth Mosias.

Sat, Feb 25. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Summit Fox Hill. 9:45am-noon. Meet at Fox Hill Cemetery parking lot by the flag pole, 130 Andover Road, Billerica. Easy two hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to explore Fox Hill. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sat, Mar 4. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Two Brothers Rocks. 9:45am-12:30pm. Easy 2 ½ hour hike starts at 9:45 am. Offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club. Meet at River View Restaurant for breakfast at 8am, or park later, across the bridge, at Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge parking lot off Nashua Road, Billerica. Great Meadows, Concord River, and Governor Dudley Park. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sat, Mar 11. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Historic Middlesex Canal. 9:45am-noon. Easy 2 hour hike. Meet at 9:45am to start walking at 10am. Offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club. Park across from the Faulkner Mill, by the Talbot dam (gazebo). Depending on conditions, explore the historic Middlesex Canal, north or south from the summit pond. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintry conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sat, Mar 11. World's End Reservation, Hingham. 5 mile hike/snowshoe, 9:00am-noon. Bring snack/water. From Rte. 3 exit 14, take Rte. 228N 6.5 mi., L on Rte. 3A 1.0mi. to rotary, R on Summer St. 0.5 mi. to light, L on Martin's Lane to entr. $6 fee for non-members of the Trustees of Reservations. Storm cancels. L Beth Mosias.

Sat, Mar 18. Hike Beautiful Billerica - Rangeway Forest. 9:45am-12:30pm. Easy 2 ½ hour hike, offered through Billerica Recreation Department and sponsored by Friends of Billerica Recreation in cooperation with the Appalachian Mountain Club, to explore connectivity with Chelmsford Russel Mill Town Forest and a historic segment of the Middlesex Turnpike. Focus on camaraderie and local history. Depending on wintery conditions, sturdy footwear, strap-on ice-grabbers or snowshoes recommended. Registration required. L Marlies Henderson.

Sun, Mar 19. Vivid Vistas, Groton. 1:00pm-3:00pm. Traverse the two highest points in Groton, both with open views. In between bagging 500 footers, see wild wetlands, beaver ponds, upland forests, and open meadows. Meet at Williams Barn (42.6264N, 71.5610W) on Chicopee Row. We'll carpool to the start, then hike back to Williams barn. About 2 hours, moderate pace. L Olin Lathrop.

Sat, Apr 1. Castle Island, South Boston. Fast-paced seven-mile scenic walk along ocean to Castle Island, 10:00am-1:30pm. Bring lunch and water. Meet inside JFK/UMass Red Line T station, upper level gates (no nearby parking). Storm cancels. No email after 3/31. No dogs; non-AMC members $1. L Beth Mosias.


Blue Hills Hikes & Happenings - Winter 2017


Want more listings? Interested in listings for other AMC chapters and committees? You can do a complete search at http://trips.outdoors.org. You can also download a PDF of all AMC Boston Chapter event listings for the next two months at http://current.amcboston.org. This may be useful now that trip listings are no longer in Outdoors magazine.

Hike Beautiful Billerica - Feb 6, 2016 with Marlie Henderson
Hike Beautiful Billerica! - Feb 6, 2016

Cutler Park Reservation, Needham
Cutler Park Reservation, Needham - May 23, 2015


Zippy walks in the woods

with permission of Bill Griffith

Zippy - Nov 11, 2012

with permission of Bill Griffith

Site Contents:

Local Walks/Hikes Home - this page.

Recent Local Walks/Hikes (2016)

Local Walks/Hikes, 2015 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2014 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2013 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2012 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2011 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2010 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2009 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2008 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2007 - brief descriptions

Local Walks/Hikes, 2003 (partial)

Local Walks/Hikes, 2002

Local Walks/Hikes, 2001

Hiking Areas - list of hiking areas and map info

Middlesex Canal - canal walk details

Hunting Seasons - hunting seasons to be aware of

Conditioning Hikes - nearby trails with elevation gain

Easy Walks - walks that are level and easy to follow

Nature Walks - nature and bird walk info

Photo Gallery - photos of the hiking areas and hikes

Local Walks/Hikes Authors - books by Local Walks leaders

Cat Rock and 80 Acres - sample chapter from Elmer Jones' book

Common Plants index - index from Hilary Hopkins' book

Common Plants sample pages - sample pages from Hilary Hopkins' book

BLUE = south of Boston

PURPLE = north of Boston

GREEN = west of Boston

BROWN = out of state

  • Sylvatica Tortuosa (Arnold Arboretum) Sylvatica Tortuosa (Arnold Arboretum)
  • View from Hemlock Hill (Arnold Arboretum) View from Hemlock Hill (Arnold Arboretum)
  • Fawn Lake (Bedford Conservation Lands) Fawn Lake (Bedford Conservation Lands)
  • Fawn Lake Rocks (Bedford Conservation Lands) Fawn Lake Rocks (Bedford Conservation Lands)
  • Ponkapoag Bog Boardwalk (Blue Hills) Ponkapoag Bog Boardwalk (Blue Hills)
  • Brook on Hemenway Hill path (Blue Hills) Brook on Hemenway Hill path (Blue Hills)
  • Blue Hills Skyline Trail Blue Hills Skyline Trail
  • Pearce Lake (Breakheart Reservation) Pearce Lake (Breakheart Reservation)
  • Pearce Lake (Breakheart Reservation) Pearce Lake (Breakheart Reservation)
  • Pearce Lake Trail (Breakheart Reservation) Pearce Lake Trail (Breakheart Reservation)
  • Silver Lake Cove (Breakheart Reservation) Silver Lake Cove (Breakheart Reservation)
  • Great Blue Heron (Charles River Greenway) Great Blue Heron (Charles River Greenway)
  • Beavers at work (Concord Conservation Land) Beavers at work (Concord Conservation Land)
  • Beavers at work (Concord Conservation Land) Beavers at work (Concord Conservation Land)
  • Fairhaven Bay (Concord Conservation Land) Fairhaven Bay (Concord Conservation Land)
  • Sudbury River (Concord Conservation Land) Sudbury River (Concord Conservation Land)
  • Sudbury River Overlook (Concord Conservation Land) Sudbury River Overlook (Concord Conservation Land)
  • Halibut Point (Rockport) Halibut Point (Rockport)
  • Halibut Point (Rockport) Halibut Point (Rockport)
  • Feeding Chickadee (Ipswich River Audubon) Feeding Chickadee (Ipswich River Audubon)
  • Goose (Lexington Conservation Land) Goose (Lexington Conservation Land)
  • Lunch at Lower Mill Pond, Mt. Misery (Lincoln Conservation Land) Lunch at Lower Mill Pond, Mt. Misery (Lincoln Conservation Land)
  • Upper Mill Pond, Mt. Misery (Lincoln Conservation Land) Upper Mill Pond, Mt. Misery (Lincoln Conservation Land)
  • Jackson Path (Lynn Woods) Jackson Path (Lynn Woods)
  • Stone Tower (Lynn Woods) Stone Tower (Lynn Woods)
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Most photos by Jack Boudreau. Others by Mike Stadelmaier, Phil Witonsky, and Susan Luo.