Nestled between Bradley Palmer State Park and Georgetown-Rowley State Forest is the lesser-known and perhaps under-appreciated Willowdale State Forest. Divided into two sections, the 2,400-acre forest features roughly 40 miles of trails. Mountain bikers with the time and stamina can connect Bradley Palmer and Georgetown-Rowley through Willdale via the Bay Circuit Trail. Because of its hub nature, Willowdale has become popular among equestrians, nature lovers, walkers, and other trail users-these trails have become a favorite of a local off-road running club.
Luckily the forest is popular among wildlife as well. Whitetail deer, owl, partridge, wild turkey, fox and coyote sightings are not uncommon. Be mindful that this is a working forest, used for logging and hunting (in November and December). Exercise caution if you're riding during hunting season or near logging areas. Terrain: Improved dirt roads, doubletrack (often wet), and singletrack. consists of mostly smooth-running doubletrack, but there are a number of tight, twisty singletrack sections. Low-lying areas can be muddy during spring, fall, and following heavy rains.
© Jeff Cutler/The Globe Pequot Press. All Rights Reserved.