Monday, April 19, 2010

Grateful Treasure Hike: The Peanuts Gang

Wachusett Reservoir Gate Access Map

The Peanuts hike map

Saturday, March 21, 2009

For information about the Northborough trails, check out our webpage

Most Northborough Trails
Northborough Trails Letterboxing Quest (zess the treehuggers)

Cedar Hill:
SVT LB Challenge 2007 (SVT; zess the treehuggers)
See Der Pine Cones (SVT; Dale End Farm)

Cold Harbor:
Winter Dawn (Mim)
Cold Harbor Cattails (zess the treehuggers)

Watson Park:
Butterfly Girl (Mim)
Just Ducky (HarmonyMA)

Jubilee Trail
Mastodon (Mim)

Mt. Pisgah
Grateful Letterbox: Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? (zess the treehuggers)
Frog Went a Jumpin' (HarmonyMA)
Grateful Letterbox: Uncle Sam (zess the treehuggers)
Grateful Letterbox: Up, Up and Away (HarmonyMA)
Children's Memorial (zess the treehuggers)

Edmund Hill
High School Musical (zess the treehuggers)
Save the Earth (zess the treehuggers)

Little Chauncy (& Talbot) Trails
Go, Dog. Go! (zess the treehuggers)

Cole Trail
The Wild (Camelgal)

Coyote Trail
Crazy Coyote (zess the treehuggers)

Old Farm Trail
Hungry Chipmunk
(HarmonyMA)

Birdsong Trail
Some Hats I Wear (HarmonyMA)

Mary Goodnow Memorial
Mary Goodnow (zess the treehuggers)

Ellsworth-McAffee Park
Get REVed up! (Are We There Yet Family)
SK8TRBOI (Dogwalkers)

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Mt. Pisgah

  • Dogs, horses, and bikes are allowed. Northborough DOES have a leash law, and it is on occasion reinforced (fines imposed), so please keep your dogs on-leash.
  • No motorized vehicles allowed.

Directions

Map it (across the street): 19 Smith Street, Northborough MA

1) From Route 9 in Westborough
a. Exit Rt. 135 West toward Northborough
b. Pass Ellsworth-McAfee Park
c. Continue 1 mile to dead-end at Route 20
d. Left onto Rt. 20
e. Quick right, just past CVS, onto Church Street
f. Stay Left at the Y
g. Continue on Church St, 2 miles, until you see the I-290 interchange.
h. Just PASSED interchange, at Davidians Farm Stand, Right onto Ball Hill
i. Follow for 1.7 miles to deadend at Green Street
j. Left on Green Street for 0.4 miles
k. Right on Smith Road
l. In 0.3 miles, trailhead is on Right side of road

2) From Route 290
a. Take Exit 24, Church Street toward Boylston (North)
b. Follow directions from (h) above

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Grateful Letterbox: Uncle Sam

The "Grateful Letterbox" series of boxes are so named to bring attention to a group formed by The Merry Pranksters and zess the treehuggers. Although inspired by a love of Grateful Dead music, the only admission criterion is that you must be grateful for something in your life. Check it out the Grateful Letterboxers group on Atlas Quest!

** Stamp carved by The Merry Pranksters**

Uncle Sam

Mt. Pisgah Conservation Area
Trailhead is across the road from 19 Smith Street, Northborough.

Mt. Pisgah is one of the largest conservation lands in the state, spreading across the towns of Northborough, Berlin, Boylston, & Bolton. The Smith Street trailhead provides access to the trails of Northborough, Berlin, and the MassWildlife property. Northborough & Mass Wildlife trails are maintained by the Northborough Trails Committee, and are exceptionally well-marked. The Berlin trails are mostly not blazed, and so are more complicated to navigate, but beautiful. This hike is entirely in Northborough (with one optional hop into Berlin).

Visit the Northborough Trails Committee website to download a trail map & information sheet on Mt. Pisgah (highly recommended; great map, interesting info).

Directions:

1) From Route 9 in Westborough
a. Exit Rt. 135 West toward Northborough
b. Pass Ellsworth-McAfee Park
c. Continue 1 mile to dead-end at Route 20
d. Left onto Rt. 20
e. Quick right, just past CVS, onto Church Street
f. Stay Left at the Y
g. Continue on Church St, 2 miles, until you see the I-290 interchange.
h. Just PASSED interchange, at Davidians Farm Stand, Right onto Ball Hill
i. Follow for 1.7 miles to deadend at Green Street
j. Left on Green Street for 0.4 miles
k. Right on Smith Road
l. In 0.3 miles, trailhead is on Right side of road

2) From Route 290
a. Take Exit 24, Church Street toward Boylston (North)
b. Follow directions from (h) above

Clues:
From the Smith Road trailhead, start on the Mentzer Trail (yellow blazes).
At the trail junction, turn onto the Sparrow Trail (red blazes).
Cross over the Berlin Road Trail (blue blazes) and continue on the Sparrow Trail.
At the next trail junction, turn right onto the Tyler Trail (also red blazes).
Follow Tyler Trail, staying to the left when it meets another trail, to the South View.
Take in the view, grab the letterbox, and take it back to the viewpoint to stamp in.

To grab the letterbox:

Find the Sparrow Trail entrance just back, and north, from the viewpoint.
The trail sign has a red blaze (triangle) on it. This is blaze #1
Proceed down the trail to blaze #3
Look to the right of the trail, at about 2:00, and notice a tree that was caught in mid-fall by another tree.
At the base of the supporting tree, just behind it (East), are two rocks, one of which sticks up and looks like an arrowhead. That’s where the box is.
Keep your eyes out to be sure you are not seen as you go to retrieve the box.
Now that you’ve spotted the location, and know where you are going, find the most gentle (on the vegetation) path, stepping softly, until you reach the rocks.
The letterbox is on the back (east/downhill) side of the rocks, tucked between them, under two loose rocks.
Take the box back to the South View, so as not to draw attention to it’s hiding spot.

Please be discreet while stamping, as this is a popular spot along these trails.
Return the box, again being careful of vegetation & passersby, and re-hide carefully placing the rocks just as you found them, so that the box is not visible.

Quickest way back to your car: Backtrack the way you came in.

Recommended way back to your car:
Continue down Sparrow Trail
Be sure to follow the red blazes when they head to the left at a Y. (The right side has blue tree-paint blazes, I think.)
As you continue on the Sparrow Trail, you will see a stone wall.
Just past this stone wall is an intersection with the Summit Trail.
At this junction, notice the cairn of large rocks. There is a Geodetic survey benchmark here marking the highest point in Northborough.
Continue on Sparrow Trail (red)
Turn Right at the yellow blazes onto the Mentzer Trail.
Follow stone wall to map board, go through wall, and follow yellow blazes to the
North View. The view is more obstructed here than the South View, but on a clear day you have a straight-on view of Boston’s Prudential Building and Hancock Tower.
Return to the stone wall, turn right, and follow the Mentzer Trail straight down the mountain, passing over the Berlin Road trail, until you reach the parking area.

NOTE: Before you set out you must read and agree to the Waiver of Responsibility and Disclaimer.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Northborough Trails Letterboxing Quest

Congratulations to our Quest Completers!

~ oldhounder (9/20/07)
~ Dale End Farm (9/20/07)
~ Lionheart (9/22/07)
~ Mim (10/7/07)
~ Alien Mom (10/7/07)
~ Camelgal (11/12/07)
~ the lazy letterboxer (11/12/07)
~ HarmonyMA (11/25/07)
~ thethreecs (1/27/08)
~ Boston B (1/27/08)
~ The Roo Crew (5/17/08)
~ cliff and katrina (7/5/08)
~ Holly Jolly (8/26/08)
~Neet (3/25/11)
~ Birdie Perch (6/3/11)

~ marrtians (5/6/12)
~ A Girl and Her Dog (5/6/12)
~ TL Chatham (10/24/13)




The Quest Explained

Clues to the first letterbox: "The Map"

Clues to the trailhead letterboxes: "The Puzzle Pieces"






Northborough Trails Letterboxing Quest Explained

Special thanks to the following letterboxers for their helping pulling this Quest together: The Merry Pranksters, Dale End Farm, Mim, and StarWars Chick.

The intent of the Northborough Trails Letterboxing Quest is two-fold: to introduce the great trails of Northborough to letterboxers, and to introduce letterboxing (and the trails) to local folks. In preparation for the launching of this Quest, we have planted at least one letterbox on all of the trail systems in town, so there are now several new ones to seek!

About the awesome Northborough Trails Committee

Northborough Trail Maps

Northborough Trails Committee website

Directions to Northborough Trails


Northborough Letterboxing blog (with clues)


About the Quest


The goals

1. Find the 10 letterboxes with stamps that together form a map of Northborough.
2. Find at least one letterbox on each of 5 trails (of your choice).

The rewards

Successful completion of steps 1 & 2 above will earn you:
1. The Northborough AppleFest stamp (if you did not get it at AppleFest)
2. A Quest-specific stamp that can only be earned by finishing this quest
3. A small “token” recognizing your accomplishment
4. A familiarity with our trails, so you can choose your favorites to hike again!

How to achieve the goals

Goal #1: The Map of Northborough stamps

1) Find the Map outline stamp. This requires you to hike the Cold Harbor Trail, and you’ll definitely want to do this first. Stamp this outline into your logbook. This stamp divides Northborough into 9 sections, each of which contains a trailhead that you will visit. Clues to the Map letterbox.

2) Find all of the 9 stamps planted at or very near nine of our trailheads. We recommend that you only color the letter in the middle of the stamp (take a marker with you), and not the outer borders (it will look nicer). The outer borders are there to help you fit the stamp (like a puzzle piece) into the correct location & orientation on the map you stamped from the Map box. A stamp found at a trailhead will be the “puzzle piece” for the part of town where the trailhead itself is located. Thus, you may want to use a town map with trails identified to help guide you. Clues to the Puzzle Pieces letterboxes.

Goal #2: You need to hike five of these trails! Provide evidence of this (the image of at least one letterbox stamp from each of these five trails), and you’ve met Goal #2. The names of boxes on each trail are listed with the Puzzle Pieces.

Once you are at the trailhead, though, wouldn’t you just want to go ahead and hike the trail? They all have at least one letterbox planted!

Upon completion of the Quest, please email us so we can arrange your reward! zess.devine@gmail.com

***Email us with any questions!!***

As with all of our letterboxes, we encourage feedback so that letterboxers will enjoy the hunts, and not get frustrated by poorly written clues or unintended hazards.

NOTE: Before you set out you must read and agree to the Waiver of Responsibility and Disclaimer.

About The Northborough Trails Committee

(from their website, Northborough Trails Commitee)

The Northborough Trails Committee's formal name is the Trails Subcommittee of the Northborough Open Space Committee. It was founded in February of 2001 when Arthur Cole went before the Open Space Committee to ask if they would be interested in creating a trail system in Northborough. They surprised him with their enthusiasm and they appointed him chairman of the subcommittee. Since then the NTC has actively searched for places to create and build new trails, as well as maintain the current trail system. The NTC is a formal Committee of the Town of Northborough, but all of the people involved are volunteers who share a common goal to provide access to the Town’s recreational areas by maintaining a viable trail system.

There are currently seven recreational areas in Northborough (Mt. Pisgah; Edmund Hill Woods; Watson Park; Little Chauncy; Cedar Hill; Carney Park; and Carlstrom II Forest) that contain approximately 20 miles of wonderful trails as part of the Northborough trail system, and some of these connect to trails in other towns such as the Westborough Charm Bracelet trail system. All of the trails in Northborough are multi-use trails, unless posted otherwise, and allowed uses are: hiking; mountain biking; skiing; snow shoeing; and, equestrian. The Sudbury Valley Trustees does not allow mountain biking on their trails at Cedar Hill and Sawink Farm. Motorized vehicles such as ATV’s are not allowed on any of the trails. Hunting is allowed on the MassWildLife properties at Mt. Pisgah and Crane Swamp. Hunting is also allowed on the Town of Northborough land at Mt. Pisgah by permit, so be aware during hunting season. Check the MassWildLife link for hunting seasons.

Visit the Northborough Trails Committee website for additional information:

Click here for .pdf files for all of the Northborough trailmaps.