Arcadia Management Area

Providence, Rhode Island 2910

Arcadia Management Area

Arcadia Management Area Professional Review and Guide

"A few miles west of Interstate 95, 25 miles southwest of Providence. Although the area is relatively flat, many single-track trails roll up and down. The roads are flatter. Watch for horseback riders and hikers. If you ride during the hunting season, from around late November through December, wear bright clothing. Check with the area manager for hunting dates."

More Arcadia Management Area Professional Reviews and Guides

"A winding trail through Rhode Island’s largest protected area. Ask people in the know about hiking and biking in Rhode Island, and they’re sure to mention Arcadia Management Area, the largest management area in the state (13,817 acres) with the most extensive network of trails.

Habitats include deciduous forest, swamps, shrub wetlands, marshes, and open bodies of water, such as Breakheart Pond, Beach Pond, Browning Mill Pond, and the Wood River. Many species of game animals and game birds reside here—and hunting is allowed in season (starting in mid-October and running through winter). Be sure to dress appropriately with plenty of fluorescent orange during hunting time. Unless you want to make this a long out-and-back trip, you’ll need to arrange for a pickup at the end."

"A fun loop on the north side of Rhode Island’s largest protected area. With close to 40 miles of trails and dirt roads winding through its almost 14,000 acres, Arcadia is a mountain biker’s paradise.

Experienced bikers can easily find long stretches of challenging singletrack, including rides on the trails described in the Arcadia hiking trips in this book. A good way to get to know Arcadia (and search for technical trails, if you’re so inclined) is to start with this 7.5-mile loop trip on dirt and forest roads."

"At more than 14,000 acres, the Arcadia Management Area is Rhode Island’s largest public land unit. Popular year-round, it is managed for multiple uses including hiking, fishing, hunting, mountain biking, and horseback riding. This 12.6-mile circuit uses the area’s best hiking trails en route to Arcadia’s most interesting natural features. The gently rolling terrain allows for a relaxing pace. For those seeking shorter excursions, this all-day loop can easily be broken into three or more half-day adventures."

"In the southwestern corner of Rhode Island lies a vast rolling landscape of streams, forests, ponds, open fields, wildflowers—and few people. The only backpacking option in Rhode Island, Arcadia Management Area encompasses more than 14,000 acres, beckons with more than 30 miles of trail, and provides an ideal early-season destination for those chomping at the spring bit.

To call this hike a backpacking trip is a bit of a stretch—the designated camping area is only 0.25 mile from the trailhead—but the site feels surprisingly remote and provides an ideal base camp for exploring the network of trails that lace the park. The short hike strolls through lush and diverse forest along one of the state’s most pristine waterways. Note that the park requires hikers to wear hunter’s orange for safety during the fall hunting season (roughly September–December)."

"Arcadia Trail in the Arcadia Management Area is maintained by the Rhode Island chapter of the Appalachian Mountain Club and is popular in the summer months with local folks as well as out-of-towners due to the easy and interesting jaunt to the public beach and picnic area. (Even in the fall, though, you are bound to encounter fellow hikers.)

Brook crossings, small ponds, and forest strolls will keep children enthused until it is time to dive into Browning Mill Pond. Camping is available within the Arcadia Management Area off Escoheag Hill and Frosty Hollow Roads. Camping is primitive and a permit is required. There is a modest fee for camping. For more information about overnighting in the area, check online before you set out."

Arcadia Management Area Reviews

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7/13/2018
This hike winds through a forest and along a river at some parts. There are several other trails along the way that you can switch to if you don't want to take Arcadia trail all the way. I think this is a pleasant hike which doesn't have spectacular views but personally I enjoy a quiet sojourn in the forest by the water so this is a great place to go to de-stress and enjoy nature.
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10/27/2013
Pond was great. Trails were well maintained. If going during deer season were blaze orange.
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4/17/2010
I really enjoyed this hike because all the leaves were still budding and could see far. There are also some good fishing spots. If you are looking for a long family hike that is pretty easy, this is a good one.
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11/5/2007
Arcadia Management Area is truly a wonderful experience. I utilize it 2 or 3 times each week and never tire of it's beauty. The trails are marked well, be it for a biker, equestrian, or hiker. It's one of the great treasures of Rhode Island.
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3/11/2006
Great trails. ONE big drawback -- I have read several descriptions of how everyone loves mountain bikers and EVEN though mountain bikes are not "technically" allowed they don't mind -- Well -- I ride up to the trail head on my bike and right there on the sign is a bicycle with a red X through it and someone says -- "you know there is no biking on this trail, right?". Enough said.
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9/1/2000
Arcadia has got some sweet technical riding if you can find it. towards the middle of the summer they had a motor-cross race that destroyed many of the trails on the north side, very unfortunate. The south side is where its at now with some fast decents and brutal, quick and steep climbs. Arcadia is always a good ride, certainly the second best riding in the state. Eye won't tell you the best because eye'm keeping that one to myself.
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6/15/2000
Arcadia Management Area is comprised of 15,000 acreas of land with about 60 miles of singletrack trails. The trail system ranges from easy to very technical. The New England Mountain Bike Patrols (Rhode Island Chapter of NEMBA) operate out of this area. We are there to provide help with medical care, Help trail trail users who are lost, evaluate trail condition and assist in repairs along with forest fire and vendalizm prevention. If your a new user to the Management Area be sure to get a trail recommendation from us. Maps are also available at the Main Lot located on the north side of Rt. 165 (down from the white church).
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Arcadia Management Area Photos

Trail Information

Providence
Nearby City
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
Several options
Trail Type
Moderate to Difficult
Skill Level
This can be a four-season ride. Note: Do not ride on trails during wet conditions.
Season
Hunting
Additional Use
Arcadia Management Area 401-539-2356
Local Contacts
The Department of Environmental Management has a rough trail map.
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Oct 2018