Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail

Leominster, Massachusetts 1453

Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail

Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Wachusett Mountain is home to a busy alpine ski area, but who cares when the rewards of trekking are so sublime? Bag the 2006-foot peak of Mount Wachusett, and you’ll enjoy a bird’s-eye view of the Boston skyline to the east, Mounts Tom and Greylock to the west, Worcester to the south, and New Hampshire’s Mount Monadnock to the north. You may even see a hawk or eagle soaring above.

This spot is one of New England’s top birding destinations, especially during the fall migration, when people come from miles away to see the raptors. At the height of the action, in October through November, up to 20,000 birds of prey fly overhead. (lf you don’t see birds on your visit, stop by the nature center and check out the stuffed mounts of New England birds.)"

More Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Best Hikes With Dogs Boston & Beyond (The Mountaineers Books)
Jenna Ringelheim
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"With an elevation of 2006 feet, Wachusett Mountain continues to be a popular destination in Massachusetts for hikers and their doggie companions. The nearly 3000-acre Wachusett Mountain State Reservation surrounds the summit and offers seventeen miles of trails for you and your pup to explore. On a clear day, the summit reveals views of the Boston skyline to the east, the Berkshires to the west, and Mount Monadnock to the north. The reservation’s natural resources include alpine meadows, forests filled with hemlock and white birch, ponds, streams, and open fields. Before you begin, stop at the visitor center and pick up a trail map for your outing."
"A ridgeline ascent to the highest point in Massachusetts east of the Berkshires, this hike is located on a state reservation with over 17 miles of trails. The loop passes through a succession of mature hardwood forests and mystical hemlock groves, as well as stone rivers of glacial till. Although its proximity to Boston, paved summit road, and chairlift to the peak can make it quite crowded, it is also famed in the fall as one of the East Coast’s premier foliage and hawk-watching spots."
Best Hikes with Kids: Connecticut, Massachusetts, & Rhode Island (The Mountaineers Books)
Cynthia Copeland, Thomas J. Lewis, & Emily Kerr
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"While kids might not grasp the full impact of a view stretching 140 miles to Mount Washington, most will delight in the top-of-the-world feeling as they survey the countryside from the Wachusett summit, the highest point in central Massachusetts. This is not a difficult mountain to climb by New England standards, but it is a mountain just the same, and the steady upward nature of this hike makes it a challenge for everyone. Proper footwear is a must. If you hike in early spring, you can stop for a snack on the crest while you watch the skiers arriving by chairlift to begin their “swoosh” down the slopes. A spring or fall hike (on a warm, sunny day) will most likely offer you an opportunity to watch kettles of migrating hawks soaring high over the valley."

Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail Trip Reports

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7/12/2009
A great active outing for a summer afternoon. The trails to the summit are moderately challenging for someone in "average" shape, as we are, but the not overly so and the 360 degrees views from the top are definitely worth the trip. We were lucky to be hiking here when the summit road was closed for construction and no cars were allowed to the summit; very peaceful and quiet. Alas, we forgot to pack the binoculars. Next time ...

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10/18/2008
I have two main complaints about this hike:

1) The amount of people

2) The auto-road, chairlift and ski trails make this seem to close to civilization.

It is nice to have a hike so close to home, but it would be nice if it were a bit more secluded. I'll probably avoid this in the future.
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4/26/2008
Fun Hike for our Boy Scout Troop!! About 4 miles. It started off with Bicentennial Trail, then a steep climb up Pine Hill Trail straight to the peak (2006 ft, 628 ft vertical ascent). You could make it a little less steep by taking the Loop Trail and then the Mountain House Trail (go a little further down Bicentennial Trail from the parking area). The boys enjoyed the view from the peak. You really can see the Boston skyline!
Old Indian Trail from the peak took us on a leisurely descent and eventually to the Balanced Rock. There was still snow on the ski slopes for Wachusett Mountain Ski Area when we crossed them, and the boys had a snowball fight. From Balanced Rock we took Balanced Rock Trail to Donbrowo Trail and back to the parking area. You have to walk along the road for a while and keep your eye out for the access to Donbrowo Trail, or cut through the base of the ski area.
The Ranger suggested getting to the parking area before 10 AM, as it fills up fast.
Info at http://www.mass.gov/dcr/parks/central/wach.htm
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12/20/2007
Little crowded but lovely well marked trails. Would recommend for people with a little snowshoeing experience but not a ton needed
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10/22/2006
A very nice walk in the woods, nice scenery and some sections that let you work up a sweat. A lot of people, on the trail, at the summit and on the roads (which you can hear from much of the trail). Still worthwhile for the views.
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8/30/2004
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7/18/2004
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Wachusett Mountain State Reservation Trail Photos

Trail Information

Leominster
Nearby City
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
4
Distance
806 feet
Elevation Gain
Loop/Lollipop
Trail Type
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
4.5 hours
Duration
Winter
Season
Wachusett Mountain State Reservation
Local Contacts
USGS Sterling, MA
Local Maps

Trail Log