Town of Plymouth Trail Information

Publicly Accessible Trails with Maps

Blazer used to mark public walking trailsWelcome to Town of Plymouth Open Space Land. As the Town acquires additional properties with designated trails they will be uploaded on this page. Public walking trails are promoted and maintained at the properties listed below.

All the properties on this page are maintained by the Division of Natural Resources (DNR). Staff will cut and remove downed trees, mow and trim back trails, install trail markers and arrows, pick up trash, and ensure they remain open for public use. Each has a designated parking area, most with a trail kiosk and maps (installed as part of a 2015 trails grant), and all have signs along the road that identiPreserve Signfies the name of the property. Properties purchased with Community Preservation Act funds feature a beautiful wooden sign like the one to the right, and are known as Preserves. Properties purchased through Town Meeting without CPA funds utilize ornately carved or white on brown painted wooden signs, and are known as Conservation Areas. 

DNR staff would also like to thank the recently formed Trails Committee for their volunteer work keeping the trails cleared, clean, and for installing benches found on multiple open space parcels for public use. The Open Space Committee has also put together an excellent trail guide with information about each area- check that out here: Plymouth Trail Guide

All Town Conservation Areas and Preserves are multi-use and open to passive recreational activities. These include but are not limited to: hiking, biking, nature viewing, snow-shoeing, hunting, fishing, and trapping. Please be aware that hunting is allowed on Town Conservation Areas and Preserves in accordance with state and federal laws. Hunting Warning SignThe Department recommends walkers and their dogs wear 'hunter orange' gear when utilizing these areas during hunting seasons. Similarly, the Department encourages hunters to be aware of the location of publicized trails and to consider that other persons may be present in these areas during popular hunting times of day. Please refer to the Fishing, Hunting and Trapping Seasons page our website, or visit our office for more information. Each year, the notice to the right is put up mid-september through the end of the year in all of the trail kiosks that are found on properties open for hunting. (Some preserves such as the Clear Pond Conservation Area are too small to hunt, so notices are not put up.) If you have questions about whether a property is huntable or not, please contact the Department.

Please note that all trails on public open space are used at the individuals own risk. While DNR strives to make trails as safe and accessible as possible, no trail can ever be considered 'risk-free'. Trails are typically not maintained between December and March during the winter storm season, so downed trees across trails may be encountered during this time. DNR staff spends several weeks in early spring addressing issues that have arisen during the winter months to ensure trails are clear and accessible for the busier outdoor seasons.  

Beaver Dam Conservation Area | Black Cat Preserve | Center Hill Preserve | Clear Pond Conservation Area | Comassakumkanit Preserve | Crawley Woodlands Preserve | David E. Alper Nature Preserve | Dixon Preserve at Hio Hill | Eel River Preserve | Foothills Preserve | Hedge's Pond Recreation Area and Preserve | Indian Brook Conservation Area | Russel Mill Pond Conservation Area | Russel and Sawmill Ponds Conservation Area | Town Forest


Beaver Dam Conservation Area

The Beaver Dam Conservation Area is approximately 783 acres in area and provides great views of Little Island Pond and Great Island Pond. Both ponds provide numerous recreational opportunities with excellent habitat for freshwater fishing and bird watching. The Conservation Area also provides unique nature walks as it is composed of upland pine barrens; a rare ecosystem primarily found in southeastern Massachusetts and Cape Cod, Long Island, and Eastern New Jersey. Beaver Dam CA Trail

The section of trail that is blazed and maintained is adjacent to Little Island Pond. Additional unmarked and unmaintained trails and cart paths wind through most of the conservation area and it is these paths that provide pedestrian access to Great Island Pond. If interested in this part of the conservation area, the Town recommends to consult a map or GPS. Closest access to Great Island Pond is available off Savery Rd. Please park in a manner that will allow emergency vehicles to pass, and do not block the exclusionary gate.

Address: In the area of 276 Beaver Dam Road
Length: 2 miles
Trail Surface: Dirt, 1 Wooden Dock
Size of Conservation Area: 783 acres

Black Cat Preserve

The Black Cat Preserve located along Black Cat Road was acquired in 2016. The Preserve was originally multiple individual parcels held by different land owners, however since the it's creation, these abutting parcels have been merged to create the 63 acre swath of protected open space we have today. The Preserve holds unique features such as two reclaimed cranberry bogs, significant topographic changes including a high ridge overlooking Brigg's Reservoir, and has frontage along the Reservoir which features a small dock for passive recreational practices such as fishing and nature viewing.Pedestrian Bridge

The area held a criss-crossing network of trails originally utilized for future selective tree harvest, however the town acquired the land prior to any cutting. Since the Town has managed the land, redundant trails have been closed and allowed to revegetate, and several new trails have been cut in order to provide public access throughout the entire area. The Department received a Department of Conservation and Recreation Trails Grant to assist with access; this money was used to remove water control structures from the now retired cranberry bogs on the property, and construct two beautiful pedestrian footbridges over the open channels. 

Address: In the area of 177 Black Cat Road
Length: 2.5 miles of trails
Trail Surface: Dirt, Bog Road, 2 Wooden Footbridges, 1 Wooden Dock
Preserve Size: 63 acres

Center Hill Preserve

The Center Hill Preserve is a 98-acre property fronting on Cape Cod Bay. The Preserve is divided into two areas separated by Center Hill Road: Center Hill West and Center Hill East.  

Center Hill West is a thickly wooded upland habitat featuring an accessible town-owned decommissioned cranberry bog. Narrow winding trails loop through the Preserve and are marked with white trail blazers. This part of the Preserve holds a rolling topography resulting in a prime location to view white-tailed deer making their way throughout the woods. The old cranberry bog frequently becomes inundated with water, and numerous species of waterfowl can be seen here during the wet events. 

Center Hill East is 28 acres of coastal land and has approximately 1/2 mile of accessible coastline. The beach has become sandier in recent years, Centerhill Eastand while it doesn't provide an excellent site for swimming and bathing as the shallows are rocky, it provides excellent unobstructed views of Cape Cod Bay. Additionally it is becoming an increasingly popular place for Harbor and Gray Seals to haul out of the water to rest. Should you see these animals, please do not disturb them, and per the Marine Mammal Protection Act, ensure you stay at least 150feet away at all times. 

Address - Center Hill West: 212 Center Hill Road 
                    Center Hill East: 158 Center Hill Road
Length: 2.4 miles of trails
Trail Surface: Dirt, Bog Road, Wooden Boardwalk, Sand, Cobble,
Size of Preserve: 98 acres

Clear Pond Conservation Area

The Clear Pond Conservation Area is West Plymouth's only dedicated conservation area. It is approximately 12 acres of reClear Pond Conservation Area stored cranberry bogs and provides a 0.6 mile circular trail that navigates around the bog and passes along Clear Pond. Approximately 150 feet of frontage on Clear Pond is accessible via this Conservation Area.

Address: In the area of 16 Surrey Drive
Length: 0.65 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt, Bog Road, Several Gravel and Timber Steps
Size of Preserve: 12 acres

Comassakumkanit Preserve

Plymouth's newest publically accessible Preserve! The Comassakumkanit Preserve is located in the Great Herring Pond of South Plymouth. A well-worn trail winds through mixed upland forest before descending into a 40 foot deep valley that is certianly a unique feature in Plymouth and worth the visit. Here, the trail joins a cart path named Valley Road- a historic road that once connected to Bourne. 
 
Please visit the Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe's website for more information about the history of area and the Comassakumkanit name. 
 
Address: In the area of 110 Roxy Cahoon Road
Length: 0.80 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt
Size of Preserve: 71 acres

Crawley Woodlands Preserve

The Crawley Woodlands Preserve is approximately 70 acres in area, located off Billington Street. The Preserve is situated between two excellent fishing ponds: Lout Pond and Billington Sea. The majority of the Preserve is comprised of steep rolling hills peaking in the center of the Preserve and descending to the two ponds. In addition to the steep topography, glacial erratics can be found throughout the area. The main trail that will take you throughout the Preserve will take you over these steep hills and can be strenuous to traverse when damp or frozen. However, where the trail concludes at Billington Crawley Preserve TrailSea an excellent view of the pond with a sitting area can be found.

Lout Pond Road, a fire road that runs through the preserve and exits onto private property at the northern and southern edges, and Branch's Point Road which runs along the northern boundary of the preserve are both privately owned. We ask that you please respect the rights of the property owners and do not walk down these roads at the boundaries of the Preserve.

Address: In the area of 375 Billington Street
Length: 2.5 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt
Size of Preserve: 70 acres

David E. Alper Nature Preserve

The David E. Alper Nature Preserve is a long narrow 19 acre preserve located at the end of Little Herring Pond Road. The area provides nice views of Little Herring Pond. The property also features a unique nature walk with plant identifiers that was created and is currently maintained by the local Herring Ponds Watershed Association. The existing cart path is wide and relatively flat and provides nice views of the pond with a secluded bench just off the trail- see if you can find it!

Address: End of Little Herring Pond Road
Length: 0.75 miles of trails
Trail Surface: Dirt
Size of Conservation Area: 19 acres

Dixon Preserve at Hio Hill

Colloquially know as the Hio Hill Preserve, this 116 acre preserve backs up to another 73 acres of association owned open space, providing excellent habitat for deer and songbirds which are frequently seen therein. The property was acquired by the Town in 2018 with a brand new trail cut and blazed in 2019 to allow visitors the opportunity to hike to the top of Hio Hill. The trail ambles through pitch pine barrens and passes near several large glacial erratics as it winds its way up the hill. This Hio Hilltrail loop is short, but showcases unique features of the property. These include glacial erratics and boulders, an open area around one of the largest pitch pines on the property, and excellent views of the ocean from the top of the hill- which on clear days areas as far as Eastham and Wellfleet can be seen from the multiple viewing areas.

Address: In the area of 1190 Old Sandwich Road
Length: 1 mile of trails
Surface: Dirt
Size of Dixon Preserve at Hio Hill: 116 acres

Eel River Preserve

The Eel River Preserve is the product of a joint effort by numerous local, state, and federal Boardwalkagencies. 1.5 miles of the Eel River stream channel and 40 acres of cranberry bogs were restored to their native state. 17,000 Atlantic White Cedar trees were planted which will, upon maturity, make the Preserve one of the largest Atlantic White Cedar swamps in the state. A flat 2 mile trail walks the perimeter of the Preserve, beginning at the trailhead located at the corner of Long Pond Road and Boot Pond Road. The trail includes multiple sections of wooden bog bridges installed by Natural Resources staff in 2020/21 along wetter portions of the trail, and a resting bench adjacent to the headwaters installed by the Trails Committee. An additional small trail loop extends into the woods at the southern end of the Preserve with great topography through old growth forest. 

Address - In the area of 2 Boot Pond Road
Trail Map:  Eel River Preserve
Length: 2.5 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt, Bog Road, Wood Bog Bridges, 1 Concrete Bridge
Size of Eel River Preserve: 40 acres
Size of Russel Mill Pond Conservation Area: 68 acres

Foothills Preserve

The Foothills Preserve is a 126 acre preserve that includes a large retired cranberry bog located at 81 Beaver Dam Road. The restoration project to return the property to it's pre-Foothills Trail Entranceagricultural state was completed in spring 2021. This project restored approximately 1 mile of brook that flows into Beaver Dam Brook in the Massachusetts Audubon's Tidmarsh Wildlife Sanctuary across the street, and features several open water ponds specifically constructed to promote duck and waterfowl habitat. This small brook was recently named Manomet Brook, and the name was officially adopted by USGS in spring 2021.
 
The Preserve is now open for passive recreational use where pedestrians can enjoy approximtely 1.5 miles of flat trails, multiple boardwalks and bridges, and is a wonderful location to nature watch, with two benches installed at the center of the property for this purpose. Please stay on the trails as thousands of dollars worth of saplings, seeds, hydroseed, and other plants have been planted around the site, and need a solid few years of no disturbance to root and flourish. 
 
Address: 81 Beaver Dam Road
Length: 1.5 miles
Surface: Dirt, Sand, Wooden Boardwalks/Pedestrian Bridges
Size of Preserve: 126 acres

Hedges Pond Recreational Area and Preserve

The Hedge's Pond Preserve is a 105 acre site situation on and surrounding Hedge's Pond. It features approximately two miles of walking trails, and a beach on the pond, as well as numerous recreational facilities: a basketball court, two tennis courts, a playground, a small athletic field, playground, beach volleyball court, horseshoe pits, restrooms, and lifeguard coverage on the beach.Hedge's Pond

The hiking trails walk through the woods through old growth forest around the pond with several descents to the water. The main beach boasts beautiful unrestricted vistas of the pond, which is completely undeveloped. 

The facility is used by the Town of Plymouth's Recreation Department for day camps, and activities; please see www.plymouthrec.com for more details. The Preserve is closed to the public Monday-Friday from 8:30am-12:30pm from the third week in June through the third week in August due to youth activities. The park is also staffed on the weekends from 9:00am-5:00pm.

Please note that this facility requires a sticker or parking fee for access during the summer months.

Address: 158 Hedge's Pond Road
Length: 2.25 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt, Gravel, Pavement 
Size of Preserve: 105 acres

Indian Brook Conservation Area

The Indian Brook Conservation Area is spawling area of woods 210 acres in size, and has approximately 3/4 of a mile of frontage along Indian Brook. Within the Conservation Area is the Manomet Recreation Area that holds four softball/little league fields, and a playground. Paved parking is readily available for the use of these public facilities. Indian Brook Trail

A recently cleared walking trial winds from the playground, across Indian Brook Road, and towards Shallow Pond. The trail is unique in that it was originally a game trail established by deer walking through the area, and so it's an 'out-and-back' trail, not a loop; a conservation boundary sign and a bench denotes the end of the trail. It moves past large old-growth pine trees and past several old swales created by heavy rains over hundreds of years. Guests wishing to walk the trial are asked to share the parking for the recreational field and may enter the trails behind the playground. An official trailhead kiosk with trail map was installed September of 2021, and is located adjacent to the playground in the recreation field complex.

Address: 1197 State Road
Length: 1.1 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt
Size of Preserve: 210 acres

Russell Mill Pond Conservation Area

The Russel Mill Pond Conservation area continues what the Eel River Preserve across the street started. A major feature of the Eel River restoration project can be seen at this part of the property as an old dam was removed and a beautiful pedestrian footbridge installed in its place. This bridge provides incredible views of the restored river, as well as opportunities to view wildlife ranging from white-tailed deer, to red-tailed hawks. This bridge also connects the Eel River Preserve to the Russel Mill Pond Preserve which provides miles of additional walking trails.Russel Mill Pond Bridge

The Russell Mill Pond Conservation Area, is a 68 acre area along the east side of Russell Mill Pond. The Preserve abuts the Eel River Preserve and miles of trails wander through upland woods and along the coast of Russell Mill Pond.

Address: 204 Long Pond RoadTrail Map: Russel Mill Pond Conservation AreaLength: 1.5 Miles of trailsSurface: DirtSize of Conservation Area: 150 acres

Russell & Sawmill Ponds Conservation AreaRussel and Sawmill Pond

The Russel and Sawmill Preserve is a 53 acre tract of land located in North Plymouth. Trails wind throughout the Preserve and provide pedestrian access to both Russel Pond and Sawmill Pond; both of these ponds are excellent fishing locations and are seasonally stocked with trout by the Massachusetts Department of Fisheries and Wildlife. Trails south of the ponds wind through a unique upland habitat comprised of old growth mixed forest. Towering white pines are found throughout the Preserve and create a understory that is mostly devoid of vegetation; a feature not typically found in southeastern Massachusetts.

Address: In the area of 25 Bourne Street
Length: 1.5 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt, Gravel
Size of Conservation Area: 53 acres

Town Forest

The Town Forest is approximately 317 acres in area, located between Rocky Pond Road, Drew Road, and Long Pond Road. The Forest holds several miles of trials and abuts four ponds: Little South Pond, Great South Pond, Cook's Pond, and South Triangle Pond. Drew Road is a publicly accessible dirt road that runs throughout the Forest and helps provide access to locations throughout.
 
The ponds in the Conservation Area are beautiful and worth visiting; the promoted trails on the attached trail map visit Little South Pondthree of the ponds, with Wildlands Trust trails provide access to South Triangle Pond. Additionally, Wildlands Trust and Massachusetts Department of Fish and Wildlife owns several dozen acres of land that abuts the Forest, helping to expand the open space. If you'd like to extend your hike, the Town trials connect to the Wildland's Trusts' Luigi and Teotista Cortelli Preserve which will add another several miles to your trip and features Pinnacle Hill.
 
Please exercise caution during hunting seasons while at this location. A state Wildlife Management Area near Cook's Pond promotes hunting, and the Town allows hunting throughout its properties in this location. It's recommended that visitors avoid this area during seasons, however if entry on this land is necessary, please wear the recommended 500 square inches of 'hunter orange' clothing in accordance with state law.
 
Additionally, please be aware that there is NO parking allowed on or along Drew Rd. The Massachusetts Office of Fishing and Boating Access allows two vehicles to park at the pump house on the Watercourse Rd. end of Drew Rd. specifically for individuals using the ponds for fishing, boating, kayaking, or similar water-dependent activities. Wildlands Trust also has 3 designated and signed trailhead parking spaces available for use of their properties. Again, these spaces are only allowed for access to Wildlands' property. If spaces are full and vehicles are outside the aforementioned designated areas, parking violations will result in a citation.
 
Address: In the area of 127 Long Pond Road
Trail Map: Town Forest
Length: 3 miles of trails
Surface: Dirt, Gravel
Size of Conservation Area: 314 acres

Additional Trails Links:

Page Last Updated 05/10/2021