Six hikes in town for solitude and sceneryPhotos taken by Kelly Chase at Sea Farms Marsh
Taking a walk in the woods is like hitting the reset button. Quiet, sylvan retreats, however, can be hard to come by on the Cape. Luckily, thanks to The 300 Committee Land Trust, the Town of Falmouth, the State, small land trusts, such as Salt Pond and Oyster Pond Environmental Trust and the foresight of many individual land donors, the town has 2,500 acres (and counting) of conservation land. With the help of local land stewards, we’ve pulled together six scenic hikes that offer solitude and a variety of vistas.
MOCK MORAINE TRAILS
20 ACRES – 2 MILES OF TRAILS | Download a trail map
PARKING: Stagecoach Way, Falmouth
Short trails crisscross throughout the Mock Moraine Parcel. Eaton Overlook is the highest point on the trail where hikers can see out to Buzzards Bay.
“I am very fond of the Mock Moraine parcels. There are lots of spring wildflowers. There’s a kettle hole with huge pines and beautiful, old stone walls covered in lichen. You can hike for half an hour and not see another person.”
– Dick Payne, 300 Committee board member and land steward
BEEBE WOODS AND PETERSON FARM
478 ACRES – 10 MILES OF TRAILS | Download a trail map
PARKING: Cape Cod Conservatory (60 Highfield Drive, Falmouth), Peterson Farm (McCallum Drive, Falmouth), and Ter Heun Drive, Falmouth
Beebe Woods and Peterson Farm comprise Falmouth’s most-visited conservation area. Trails traverse the quiet woods and alongside bucolic farmland.
“I find there is a tranquility about being in the woods. Yet for kids, there is a sense of adventure. There are large rocks for them to climb as well as several ponds they can explore for fish and frogs. I like it best in the fall when the leaves are changing as well as the winter when I can cross country ski.”
– Gary Walker, former 300 Committee board member and current volunteer
LONG POND AND FALMOUTH TOWN FOREST
585 ACRES – 6 MILES OF TRAILS | Download a trail map
PARKING: Brick Kiln Road and Goodwill Park
A dirt road encircles Long Pond, one of Falmouth’s largest bodies of water and the town’s drinking supply, so it’s a great place for walking and bike-riding. History and geology combine to make this a fascinating area.
“Long Pond is one of our largest water bodies and it’s in the middle of significant forest. It probably looks much like it did when the colonists arrived. At one point cows grazed here. The forest has grown back, but you can still see the old stone walls that marked the field boundaries. Also, there are many geologic features to see and discover along with a huge variety of trees and wildflowers.”
– Tom Stone, 300 Committee board president
1,400 LINKED ACRES – 9 MILES LONG | More details
PARKING: Long Pond, Brick Kiln Road, Service Road, Falmouth Tech Park, Route 151
The Moraine Trail runs from Long Pond to Route 151 and there are various access points. In some parts it’s hilly and challenging; in other parts it’s quiet as you pass old stone walls, fern patches and cathedral pines.
“The trail from Thomas Landers to 151 is one of Falmouth’s hidden treasures. It is a good one-hour hike one way, without having to cross roads. With the exception of occasional noise from the highway, you feel as though you are traveling through a secluded northern New England forest.”
– Anne Curi Preisig, 300 Committee volunteer
SEA FARMS MARSH
87 ACRES – 1.5 MILES OF TRAILS | Download a trail map
PARKING: South side of Gayle Avenue or at end of Pacheco Path.
Sea Farms Marsh has trails through the quiet woods and along the way are views of Bournes Pond through the trees.
“It’s so nice to see the change of seasons along these trails: in the summer, you have all of the foliage and everything is growing beautifully and and you can come and get away from the crowds. In the fall, it’s nice to see the leaves changing. Each season there are new birds and all year-round it’s quiet and peaceful. This area is really special to me because I grew up in Falmouth right down the street from here. Back then there were only two side streets and now there are 35 side streets, so it’s nice to still have this pocket within all the developed areas.”
– Claire DeMello, 300 Committee land steward
113 ACRES – 2 MILES OF TRAILS | Download a trail map
PARKING: Off Route 28A in West Falmouth
Walk through the woods by working farmland and cranberry bogs—it’s easy to see why this is one of the most popular places to walk in town. Bourne Farm is owned and managed by Salt Pond Areas Bird Sanctuaries, Inc. Surrounding Wing Pond Woods and Cardoza Farm are town-owned properties stewarded by the 300 Committee.
“This whole area is a gem and covers a variety of topography and scenery. I’m really attracted to all its elements: open fields, kettle holes, rolling hills, oak and pine woods, pond and cranberry bogs. All these conservation areas are easily accessed by the Shining Sea Bikeway.”
– Molly Cornell, 300 Committee volunteer