Mount Toby State Reservation

Loop • 5.5 mi • 750 ft

Ten miles north of Amherst. Traveling part of the Robert Frost Trail and Summit Road (a restricted road closed to vehicles), this loop explores rich woods and obtains a summit panorama sweeping a 50-mile radius. Spurs visit a cabin ruin, side mountain, and Cranberry Pond. Special attractions: Summit panoramas, rich forest, cool brook drainage, pond view, opportunity for solitude, fall foliage.
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Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Amherst
Length: 5.5 total miles
Elevation Gain: 750 feet
Trail Type: Loop/Lollipop
Skill Level: Moderate
Season: Spring through fall; daylight hours.
Local Contacts: University of Massachusetts - Amherst, Department of Forestry and Wildlife Management, 413-545-2665
Local Maps: "Mt. Toby Trail Map" by New England Cartographics (available for purchase in area outdoor stores or by writing to the company directly).
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Recent Trail Reviews


Mount Toby was a pretty easy hike if you take Tower Rd. It's basically a logging road that leads to the Tower at the top. I hiked it in about 3hr 30min in the winter. No snow had fallen but water runoff made some spots very icy. I'll go back to hike the other trails but all in all it was pretty good. You can see Mt Monadnock off to the distance from the top on a clear day. The area has 5 waterfalls which may be pretty fun to see during the fall or early spring.


The ground was still quite moist after a rain the previous night so some parts of the trail were muddy or still flowing with water. Those parts were very easy to walk beside. The biggest issue was the trails were very poorly marked. At one point the trail itself just disappeared and because there were no marks we decided to not push on but to go back to another trail. Eventually we got to the road and figured out the simplest way to the top. We decided to come down the same way as well - down the powerline to the road and then out to the Reservation Rd. trailhead. The top of Mt. Toby is worth the climb. The climb up the firetower was particularly good because we were very sweaty after a afternoon hike and the cool breeze at near the top of the firetower refreshed us tremendously. I would strongly suggest taking the topo map if you go. We did not and that might have helped us out.

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