Upper Charles River Reservation, Boston

Newton, Massachusetts

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1 Review
5 out of 5
A natural and wild quality pervades the Charles River’s banks upriver from the dam at Watertown Square. Unlike the riverbanks along the Charles River Basin—the well-known Boston and Cambridge Esplanades with their elegant, manicured walkways and skyline views—the Upper Charles is a narrow winding body of water bordered by a ribbon of lush vegetation. Small dams and arching bridges regularly punctuate this walk, and views of the water are short and focused, extending only to the next river bend, and frequently provided by wooden overlook decks. Forested floodplain wetland supports all this wildlife diversity: tall maple trees provide perch sites for birds such as cormorants, flycatchers, kingfishers, and hawks, which hunt along the river. The expansive tree canopy also provides roosting areas for many birds, including colonies of black-crowned night herons.
Walk Boston

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Walk Boston

by Robert Sloane (editor) of WalkBoston (Appalachian Mountain Club Books)

A natural and wild quality pervades the Charles River’s banks upriver from the dam at Watertown Square. Unlike the riverbanks along the Charles River Basin—the well-known Boston and Cambridge Esplanades with their elegant, manicured walkways and skyline views—the Upper Charles is a narrow winding body of water bordered by a ribbon of lush vegetation.

Small dams and arching bridges regularly punctuate this walk, and views of the water are short and focused, extending only to the next river bend, and frequently provided by wooden overlook decks. Forested floodplain wetland supports all this wildlife diversity: tall maple trees provide perch sites for birds such as cormorants, flycatchers, kingfishers, and hawks, which hunt along the river. The expansive tree canopy also provides roosting areas for many birds, including colonies of black-crowned night herons.

©  Robert Sloane (editor) of WalkBoston/Appalachian Mountain Club Books. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Walking
Nearby City: Newton
Distance: 6
Trail Type: Shuttle
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 5 hours
Season: Year-round
Driving Directions: Directions to Upper Charles River Reservation, Boston

Recent Trail Reviews

11/2/2009
0

This is a beautiful trail. It's hard to believe that so much natural beauty exists alongside busy urban areas. The Charles River is visible almost all of the time, occasional benches are available for resting, and there are wooden viewing platforms. This is truly a gem for walkers and bicyclists.



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