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Virginia Woods Loop

Easy
 4.0 (2) RECOMMENDED ROUTE

A short but exciting and informative tour through Virginia Woods and the Spot Pond Brook Historic District.


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Map Key

0.9

Miles

1.5

KM

92%

Runnable

179' 55 m

High

62' 19 m

Low

117' 36 m

Up

118' 36 m

Down

5%

Avg Grade (3°)

12%

Max Grade (7°)

Dogs Leashed

Features Birding · Historical Significance

Overview

Head back in time through this easily-accessible but remote-feeling parcel of forest. Depending on the time of year, the Spot Pond Brook and nearby wooded marshes can change dramatically in addition to sections of trail that can be overgrown. This run combines two short loops through the Virginia Woods in a counter-clockwise direction, though the trails can be traveled in any direction to accommodate groups of varying abilities and/or ages.

Need to Know

Bikes not permitted in Virginia Woods. Easiest parking off Woodland Road just south of the intersection with Pond Road.

Runner Notes

Scenic woods that can sometimes be overgrown in the warmer months.

Description

From the kiosk parking area at 1 Woodland Road, head into the woods in the back right (southeast) corner of the lot. Quickly, you'll come across the first intersection. Heading right (south) will ensure you stay on the right path as there aren't any other trails until you arrive at the F3-2 gate.

From the gate, head right (south) on the Crystal Spring Trail for a hundred feet and look for the yellow-blazed trail to the left. This second loop branches off the Crystal Spring Trail so it's up to you to take the first left and travel the loop clockwise or continue and take the second left to travel the loop counterclockwise (shown here). When in doubt, look for the yellow blazes.

Finishing the second loop, retrace your steps to the F3-2 gate and this time head northwest along the Crystal Spring Trail (red blazes) as it overlaps with the Spot Pond Brook Historic Trail (yellow blazes). Stay to the left (west) in order to finish this first loop back to the parking area.

Check out the Trail Run Project mobile app for on-trail navigation.

Flora & Fauna

Songbirds, hawks, snakes, frogs, turkeys, deer, etc.

History & Background

For over two hundred and fifty years, from 1640 to 1896, Spot Pond Brook and the surrounding area was the site of numerous mills which contributed to the local industry. Be on the lookout for signs of this history in the form of mill ponds and crumbling foundations.

Contacts

Shared By:

Zander Göpfert

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 2 votes

#3148

Overall
  4.0 from 2 votes
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Recommended Route Rankings

#30

in Massachusetts

#3,148

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Photos

Stone Bridge Waterfall" by Eric Kilby (https://www.flickr.com/photos/ekilby/9113874150/in/photolist-eTmZgd-eTmYqL-eTmZU1-eTazyP/), Flickr licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/).
Nov 11, 2019 near Melrose, MA

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