Central MA

Central MA

Douglas State Forest

96 Wallum Lake Rd
Douglas  Massachusetts  01516
United States

508 476-7872

Easy

30%

Moderate

50%

Difficult

20%

Description

In june of 1994, this state forest in southern Worcester County was the location for NEMBA's National Trails Day event. Douglas State Forest was chosen because of its centralized location where Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island come together, (a"Tri-State"marker is located in the southwestern corner of the forest).

Douglas is less than an hour's drive from Boston, Springfield, Hartford and Providence. Douglas State Forest also offered us the opportunity to plan routes for several good rides on its 30 plus miles of trails and dirt roads. With the exception of a few trails in its southeastern corner, which are limited to hiking only, all of its trails are open to mountain bikes as well as to other non-motorized trail users. While many of the forest's trails were created by and for motorcyclists, they lost permission to use the forests trails in the fall of 1996. Even so, many uninformed motorcyclists and ATV'rs are still out on the trails. While this latter prospect might give pause to some mountain bikers, the motorcycles are the creators of many of the singletrack trails we can enjoy riding on our bikes.


The forest is on a plateau with no major hills and a total elevation variation of around 300 feet. Many of the singletrack trails are very rocky, and they interlace amongst a number of two track woods roads and a network of loose surface gravel forest roads. It's possible to switch back and forth from tough technical going to easier doubletrack riding handily once you have figured out how it all holds together, This provides for a wide variety of riding experiences from beginner to advanced expert, simply by picking the trails to suit.

The trail map from the Departmen of Conservation and Recreation is usually available at forest headquarters on Wallum Lake south of route 16, which bisects the forest from west to west, (follow signs from route 16 if you choose to go there). It shows all the known trails, including some adjacent to the forest in neighboring Douglas Woods.

One suggested starting point is on Wallis St. just off route 16 near Whitin Reservoir. This is a dirt parking area opening directly onto a doubletrack into the forest. We don't suggest starting near forest headquarters as trails leading from there include those limited to hikers only. We normally park on Route 16 which is more centrally located. At a location near a metal gate where several of the forest dirt roads and trails cross that highway and run from there either north or south. This allows more flexibility in planning a route. (Don't block the gate if you choose to park there.)

Route 16 is easily accessed from the Webster interchange on Rt. I-395 just north of the Connecticut state line. The western boundary of the forest is about 3.5 miles east on Rt. 16 and in another 1.5 miles is the Cedar St. crossroads where a right turn leads to the forest headquarters (a sign is posted here) and a left turn leads to the Wallis St. parking area. There is a great swimming area near forest headquarters. Just follow the signs.

As a result of NEMBA's hosting National Trails Day events at Douglas State Forest, we undertook trail maintenance responsibilities for a section of about five miles of the Mid-State Trail where it runs through the forest from Rt. 16 to its northern boundary. The previous volunteer from a hiking group found advancing years were handicapping his effectiveness and NEMBA has volunteered to step in for this individual. We cleared this entire section as we have used much of it on the National Trails Day routes. It makes for very technical riding. We've been back each spring since to continue the job.

In a further effort towards trail maintainence, NEMBA's Symms Grant award for trail maintenance projects was, in part, spent in the forest, building bridges on this section of the Mid-State Trail. So even as this location becomes more significant to us as riders, this investment will add to our long term enjoyment of the forest's trails.

NEMBA's National Trails Day ride returned to Douglas State Forest in both 1995 and 1996. In the three years well over 600 NEMBA members and non-members enjoyed Douglas's extensive trail network and we have been enjoying them ever since. Why not join them.

By Bob Hicks Read more about [node:title]

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Central MA

Charlemont Trails

200 Warfield Rd
Charlemont  Massachusetts  01339
United States

Easy

15%

Moderate

35%

Difficult

40%

Description

Charlemont Trails System

Trails Summary April 2012

The town of Charlemont MA.  is a hilltown community of about 1,300 residents located along the Deerfield River and the scenic Mohawk Trail in northwestern Massachusetts.


Settled in 1744, Charlemont covers 26 square miles and is still home to working farms and cottage industries as well as many recreational opportunities from mountain biking to whitewater rafting to downhill skiing.
The Charlemont Trails project is a joint venture between NEMBA and several landowners around the center of Town, and crossing to the south into neighboring Hawley MA.  The project began in the summer of 2010 with the construction of a 3 mile one-way trail from the summit of Mt. Institute to the parking lot at Berkshire East.  This trail, dubbed Billy’s World, features some nice bermed corners, several large rock features, and some planned boardwalks crossing the many seeps endemic to these hills (until the boardwalk project is completed, use caution and good judgment in riding or by-passing the wet areas).


The summer of 2011 saw much of the construction focus on the other side of the valley including buffing the major trails at Zoar Outdoor Adventure Resort (notice the recursive acronymJ).  The lone exception was the construction of the E. Stranged Moose trail on the summit of Mt. Institute.  This trail winds circuitously for about 2 miles from just past the “T” at the top of East Rd. to the top of Billy’s World.

The Zoar trails were constructed, but un-blazed and suitable for very advanced riders only, prior to NEMBA’s assistance in re-routing, bridging, and bench-work.  The first trail, King Phillip’s, we recommend as the climbing trail of the pair, begins in the camping area and ascends to the top of the Zip-Line road.  The second, the West Side Trail, begins about 100 yards to the west of the top of King Phillip’s and descends back to the Zoar parking lot.  Connecting these two on the western shoulder of Warfield Mtn is the Little Rock Trail.  All of these three trails feature a nice mix of natural rock, twisty navigation of hummocks, occasional steeps, there is about 700 feet of elevation change from the Zoar parking area to the top of these trails.


Above and to the north and west of the Zoar trails are the trails most easily accessed from the Warfield House parking area. The main trail in this area is the Zoar-Warfield Connector.  This trail runs from the Warfield House banquet parking lot to the intersection of the Little Rock and West Side trails mentioned above.  This trail meanders through the sugarbush before ascending to the eastern shoulder of Warfield Mtn.  There is some nice exposure as the trail runs along some large boulders and cliffs.  At the mid-point of the Connector, is the intersection with the TV Tower Trail.  The TV Tower trail, as its name implies, climbs to the summit of Warfield Mtn, where the 1970s community television antennae tower is located.  Long obsolete courtesy of the dish throughout the community, the tower and shed still stand today.  At about the half-way point of the TV Tower trail, is the intersection with Get Smart, a circuitous adventure through the forest taking advantage of nearly every rock feature possible.  Get Smart and the TV Tower Trail, joint an access road just short of the summit, follow that, or detour onto Agent 99 for a more circuitous route to the top of Warfield Mtn.  Those faint of heart, or careful and wise by nature, might wish to avoid the rock spine just before you reach the top.

From the summit, visitors can either take the access road or opt for the more technical Lost around the Western Shoulder of Warfield Mtn.

Also accessible from the Warfield Parking Lot, are trails on the other side of Rice Brook.  Take the Brook Road, climb up to the Sound of Music Meadow.  From there, you have two options, less experienced riders can get a nice run through some of the least technical and flattest trails in Charlemont by taking a right at the far gate, then an immediate left onto Skidder.  This brings riders to the Druid Ridge area with about 2 miles of recovered running and hiking trails that skirt the ridge top.  Featured here are few rocks, gentle slopes and wide corners.  Those seeking more aggressive riding should take a left at the gate and follow Riddel Road to the top or Riddel Ridge.  From there they can catch the 3-mile tight, technical and challenging Red Zone trail and then the Rice Brook trail back to the bridge they crossed earlier.  Intermediate riders, may opt instead to look for a rock kiosk on the left and ride Sweet 16 to the mid-point of Red Zone or follow the Middle Loop Road back to the brook.

More trails added weekly, but this is a quick summary of what’s on the ground now.

Charlemont Trails aslo has its own website.

By Harold Green Read more about [node:title]

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Warfield House

Wachusett

  • Wachusett NEMBA was founded in 1998 to improve the trails at Leominster State Forest.  We also work and ride in the Groton Town Forest, Townsend State Forest, the Midstate Trail and beyond.  We are expanding our initiatives to help develop new trail in Oakham and Spencer State Forests. We are also working closely with other volunteers at Treasure Valley Scout Reservation to enhance and expand their trail system. We host weekly rides and have organized trail days, so come ride and lend a hand.
  • DCR Funding

    Big Setback! Click for the update.

    Click here for details

  • NEMBA COVID Guidance for Rides & Trail Care Sessions

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  • NEMBA has a new Executive Director!

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Pioneer Valley

  • Pioneer Valley NEMBA operates in the Connecticut River Valley comprising Franklin, Hampshire and Hamden counties. Some of the key parks we work and ride in are Mt. Grace SF, Wendell SF, Mt. Toby Wildlife Management Area, Sugarloaf State Reservation, Montague Plains Wildlife Management Area, Erving SF, Dubuque SF, Holyoke Range SF, Robinson SP and the D.A.R. State Forest.

    We welcome new members and volunteers, so join us to make the Pioneer Valley an even better place to ride.

    PV NEMBA's Facebook Page keeps you current with chapter rides, events and discussions.

  • DCR Funding

    Big Setback! Click for the update.

    Click here for details

  • Charlemont - Hawley get $14,000 for trails.

    Click here for details

  • NEMBA COVID Guidance for Rides & Trail Care Sessions

    Click here for details

  • NEMBA has a new Executive Director!

    Click here for details

Midcoast Maine

  • Midcoast Maine NEMBA rides, builds trail and promotes all things mountain biking in the Camden, Rockport, Rockland and Lincolnville are of coastal Maine. We partner with local government, landowners and land conservation groups to secure cooperative, community-based support for mountain bikers and a connected trail system.

    New members and new riders are always welcome!

  • NEMBA COVID Guidance for Rides & Trail Care Sessions

    Click here for details

  • NEMBA has a new Executive Director!

    Click here for details

  • Midcoast Maine NEMBA accepted as IMBA Dig-In Project

    Support the fundraising efforts and help reach Midcoast Maine NEMBA receive $2000 in matching funds!

    Click here for details

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