Appalachian Mountain Club
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
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.
Lisa Fleischman, Chair, Local Walks/Hikes
Robert Winters, Local Walks/Hikes, webmaster & trip coordinator
Love that winter hiking!
Upcoming Local Walks ($1 for non-members...but, please, become a member!):
Sun, Jan 21. Joe English Reservation, Amherst, NH. A 7 mile quiet, hilly wander 9:30am-3:30pm through varied woodlands on well maintained trails. Meet by Peabody Mill Environmental Center, Brook Rd, Amherst, NH. From Nashua, NH, Rte. 3 exit 7, 101A W to junction 101 E (7.4mi) toward Amherst/Manchester. Turn left after 5.7mi on Horace Greeley Rd, left again 0.4mi on Brook Rd. Go 1.4mi to pkg at dead end. No advance reservation required. Call if weather uncertain. L Mark Levine (email@example.com).
Sun, Jan 21. The Throne, Groton. 1:00pm. Come hike thru one of the largest contiguous undeveloped parcels in the area, featuring mostly upland forest and a variety of wetlands. About 2 hours, moderate pace. Meet at the end of Castle Drive, 42.6260N 71.6171W. L Olin Lathrop.
Sun, Jan 21. Hike, Cutler Park Reservation. Meet at 1:00PM. This will be a 2 to 3½ hour walk in Cutler Park, located in Dedham and Needham. Bring water and snacks. Wear hiking/sturdy walking shoes/ traction gear will be mandatory for snow/ice. Trails are mostly dirt, with some boardwalks, flat, with some gentle hills. Moderate pace. Heavy rain cancels. Contact leader if uncertain. Location: 110 Kendrick St. Needham, MA. L Mike Oliverio.
Sat, Jan 27. Grassy Pond Conservation Land, Acton. Slow-paced nature walk through fields and forests to Grassy Pond learning to identify deciduous plants in winter. The walk will focus on plant ID and fun natural history. 1:00pm-4:00pm. Rte. 2 to Exit 42 (Rte. 27/Main St., Acton). Follow Rte. 27 north for about 1 mile through Acton Center and turn left on Nagog Hill Rd. Go 1.1 miles. Parking lot on left just past small meadow. Steady rain or heavy snow cancels. L Boot Boutwell.
Sat, Jan 27. Blue Hills Hike, Milton. Blue Hills - 5 mile brisk-paced hike along yellow triangle trail with rolling hills, 9:30am-noon. Meet at Houghton's Pond parking lot. From Rte. 93/128 exit 3 (Houghtons/Ponkapoag), go N 0.5 mi. to stop sign, R on Hillside St. 0.2 mi. to Houghtons Pond lot on R. Bring lunch and water. Storm cancels. Bring traction devices for boots.
Sat, Feb 3. Broadmoor Mass Audubon walk, Natick. 10:00am-Noon. Meet at the Visitors Center. Join us for a walk in this convenient (Natick on Route 16), yet expansive wildlife retreat. Moderate pace, easy trails with some gentle hills and rocks. Bring water and snacks. No children or dogs. Severe weather cancels, if snow on the ground, we will snowshoe. Call Lisa if uncertain. Charge: $5 if not a Mass Audubon member, plus $1 if not an AMC member. Click here for: Driving directions. L Lisa Fleischman; CLs Mary Wisbach, Julia Hsia.
Sun, Feb 4. Powisett Farm, Dover. Gentle walk, open fields. Snowshoe/walk, thru meadows, 1:00pm-3:00pm. Meet at Trustees of Reservation Powisett Farm, at grey barn near the entrance. 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. Rain cancels. Snowshoes if snow. L Jean Veigas.
Sun, Feb 11. Spring Hill and Nashoba Brook conservation areas, Acton. Relatively easy hike/snowshoe loop of about 5.5mi through contiguous Spring Hill and Nashoba Brook conservation areas, Acton, MA. 9:30am-1:30pm. Spring Hill contains the longest Acton segment of the Bay Circuit Trail that passes through this pleasant, quiet and wooded area. Adjacent Nashoba Brook is a scenic area with abundant stonework, early mill sites, a ‘potato cave’ and the historic pencil factory site. Meet 9:20am at Spring Hill Rd. cul-de-sac, off Pope Rd, Acton. From the Rte 2 Concord Rotary head NW on MA 119 W/MA 2A W 0.9mi to right on Pope Rd. Continue 1.9mi to left on Spring Hill Rd. Cul-de-sac is 0.3mi. Storm cancels. L Mark Levine (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Sun, Feb 11. Fitch's Bridge to Hayes Woods, Groton. 1:00pm. We will cross the scenic Nashua River, hike along a old railroad bed, thru the Johnston Conservation area, around a lovely beaver pond in Hayes Woods, and back. Meet at Fitch's Bridge, 42.62549N 71.60886W. Park by either end, but note that cars can't cross. About 2 hours, moderate pace. L Olin Lathrop.
Sat, Feb 17. 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. Storm cancels. L Beth Mosias.
Sun, Feb 25. Mine Falls Park, Nashua, NH. 1:00pm. Hike/snowshoe beautiful Mine Falls. We will follow along streams and meander around a pond, and possibly walk along a canal. Opportunities to view wildlife. This hike will be approximately 2/2.5 hours plus - depending on group speed. Traction devices are strongly recommended due to possible icy conditions. Directions: from Route 3, take exit 6 Nashua, NH, west on route 130, take a left on Coliseum Ave. (Hannaford), go all the way to end and park in parking lot. Inclement or dangerous cold weather will cancel. L Judi Barthakur, CL Uschi Kullman.
Sat, Mar 10. 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.
Sun, Mar 11. J Harry Rich State Forest, Groton. 1:00pm. This is a flat stroll along a scenic former bend of the Nashua River no longer in the main flow and popular with wildlife, parts of the active Nashua River, and thru typical New England woods. Meet at the entrance on Nod Road across from Common St., 42.63009N 71.57936W, about 2 hours, moderate pace. L Olin Lathrop.
Sun, Mar 18. Wunnegan Conservation Area, Boxford. 1:00pm-3:00pm. It is easy terrain, moderate pace, will last about 2 hours. Kids and dogs are welcome. Take exit 51 off Route 95 in Boxford and head WEST on Endicott Rd. Very soon make a right on Middleton Rd. Next take 3rd left on Moonpenny Drive and then first right on Crooked Pond Dr. There is a sign for Wunnegan with a small parking area about a mile down from your last intersection on the right. L Steve Davis.
Sun, Mar 25. Mine Falls, Nashua, NH. 6-mile easy walk along Nashua River, canal with 1886 gatehouse, spectacular waterfall in 325-acre park, from 9:45am-2:00pm. Bring lunch and water. Route 128 Exit 32, Burlington, to Route 3N toward Nashua. Stay right on Exit 5 lane and take Exit 5A (Simon Street), then left on Simon Street, left on Whipple Street to parking lot at the end. Heavy rain cancels. L Mark Levine.
Sat, Apr 7. 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. L Beth Mosias.
Sun, Apr 15. Groton Traverse. 1:00pm. This hike will feature an impressive variety of environments while traversing a large patchwork of open and conserved lands. We will see beaver ponds, eskers, drumlins, marshes, dry uplands, hemlock groves, open fields, pretty streams, and wide vistas from hilltops. We will meet at Williams Barn (42.6265N 71.5610W), leave some cars, carpool to the start, and end up back at Williams Barn. About 2 hours, moderate pace. L Olin Lathrop.
Sun, May 20. Rocky Hill Sanctuary and adjoining woodlands, Groton. 1:00pm. This is a great area to hike around in, with a beautiful point on Long Pond, beaver marshes, a heron rookerie, and more. About 2 hours, moderate pace. No dogs. Meet at the Rocky Hill Sanctuary parking area off of Robin Hill Rd. in Groton, 42.5811N 71.5311W. L Olin Lathrop.
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 permission of Bill Griffith
with permission of Bill Griffith
Local Walks/Hikes Home - this page.
Recent Local Walks/Hikes (2017)
Local Walks/Hikes, 2016 - brief descriptions
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)
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