Posts Tagged ‘ Along The East Bay Bike Path ’

East Bay Bike Path South – Barrington/Warren/Bristol

  • East Bay Bike Path South
  • Metropolitan Park Drive, Barrington, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°45’12.02″N, 71°20’54.74″W
  • Last Time Hiked: August 23, 2016
  • Approximate distance hiked: 8.4 miles
  • Easy to moderate due to distance.

After walking the northern end of the East Bay Bike Path, I decided to finish what I started. The southern end of the oldest bike path in the state winds along the former Providence, Warren, and Bristol Railroad through Barrington, Warren, and Bristol. Along the way there are several points of interest as the paved path passes through the East Bay neighborhoods. Starting at Haines Park, one of the oldest State Parks, I started making my way south. Almost immediately I could hear the sounds of the dog park just beyond the trails and woods to the left. Soon the bike path crosses the lower end of the Annawomscutt Brook just before it dumps into Allins Cove. Immediately after that the bike path makes its first of several road crossings in Barrington at Bay Spring Avenue. To the right is a large brick building that was once a mill. It is now a condominium building. This section of Barrington was its industrial center will mills producing leather and lace products. This building is the only surviving building of that era. Also at this road crossing is a memorial to residents of West Barrington that have lost their lives in wars. Next the bike path crosses Alfred Drowne Road in the neighborhood that was once known as Drownville where one of several railroad depots were located in Barrington. The neighborhood was known for its oyster operations and the land was mostly owned by the Drowne family and later the Blount family known locally for their current clam shacks and seafood products. After crossing Washington Road the bike path enters a half mile stretch of trees and residential neighborhoods before coming to Little Echo Pond. Here, and the surrounding ponds, there was once an icing operation, but the icehouse that sat on the opposite side of the pond is long gone. On each side of the bike path there are small Barrington Land Conservation Trust properties with short trail systems. Both Lombardi Park and Andreozzi Nature Preserve are marked with signs at their trailheads. Just before South Lake Drive on the right was the location of the Nayatt Depot, the next railroad stop in Barrington. After crossing South Lake Drive you will notice the greens of the Rhode Island Country Club to the right. This golf course is one of the most prominent ones in the state hosting the CVS Charity Classic each year. The next road crossing is Middle Highway, after crossing it the bike path passes several trails on the right. These trails are part of Veterans Park which surrounds Brickyard Pond. Today the pond is used for mostly fishing. In years past, there were mills in the area that made bricks. Clay pits in the area supplied the material to make the bricks. Workers would dig these massive pits and in time the pits would fill with water. After the operations ceased in the area and the pumps shut down, the pits filled with water. Hence, the creation of Brickyard Pond. Many buildings on the East Side of Providence were built with the bricks made in Barrington. The bike path also passes the Bayside YMCA before approaching County Road. Just before the main road there is a plaza on the right that offers several shops for a break. There was also a train depot here. On the left is the Daily Scoop, a local ice cream shop. After crossing Route 114, the bike path then passes through a tunnel of trees, then passes Police Cove Park, before emerging out to the Barrington River. Here is the first of two bridges in Eastern Barrington that connect the southern end of New Meadow Neck to Barrington and Warren respectively. The first bridge, crossing the Barrington River offers view of the river northerly toward Hundred Acre Cove. The view to the south is that of is similar of that of the second bridge that crosses the Palmer River. They both look toward the bridges that carry Route 114 over the water crossings and the marinas beyond them. The two rivers come together just about a half mile south to form the Warren River. After crossing the second bridge you are in Warren. You will notice the large brick building to the south that once was the home to American Tourister, a maker of travel luggage. To the north is Grinnel Point with its windswept grass. The bike path then starts to turn to the south and into the heart of Warren. Houses and side streets become very frequent in this stretch. To the left you first pass Belcher Cove and its wooded shoreline. At the Brown Street crossing and to the left you will notice the remains of an old brick wall by the fenced in area owned by National Grid. This wall was once part of the old power station that was used by the railroad. Soon you will start to see the steeples of the nearby churches through the cluster of homes. The bike path then crosses Market Street and Child Street, passing a Dels Lemonade, before coming to a large parking area behind Town Hall, Fire Station, and Police Station. It is in this area that a spur line to Fall River split from the main track and headed east. The East Bay Bike Path follows the former line to Bristol from here. (The Warren Bike Path to the east follows a section of the spur trail). After passing a well-placed bicycle shop and Franklin Street the bike path comes out to Main Street. There is a traffic light with a crosswalk here. It is a very busy intersection, do not attempt to cross without using the crosswalk and light. After crossing the street the bike path continues south and soon passes Burrs Hill Park. The park offers basketball courts, tennis courts, and a ball field. There are also free concerts here. Through the park you can see the water and Warren Town Beach. The bike path continues through residential neighborhoods after passing under Bridge Street through a tunnel that replaced a former railroad bridge. The bike path is also flanked by post and rail fence for quite a while. Soon the bike path passes an area known as Jacobs Point to the right. The large salt marsh, abundant with cattails and wildflowers, offers a single trail to the beach. Just after Jacob’s Point the bike path enters Bristol and soon comes to the McIntosh Wildlife Refuge. This Audubon property spans from Route 114 to the Warren River on both sides of the bike path. To the left is access to the trails through the fields by the Educational Center. To the right is the long boardwalk that reaches out to the river. The bike path then continues through more residential areas with several road crossings before coming to Colt State Park. Along this stretch you can catch glimpses of Narragansett Bay including the Conimicut Lighthouse. After crossing the entrance road to Colt State Park the bike path passes Mill Pond to the right where you are likely to catch glimpses of cormorants and egrets. After passing Poppasquash Road the bike path follows the upper reaches of Bristol Harbor before ending at Independence Park and the edge of Downtown Bristol. Here along the Bristol waterfront you will see several boats docked and the old brick buildings in the distance. If you still have a little walk left in you, the waterfront and downtown offers a great walk on its own

Trail maps can be found at: East Bay Bike Path South

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The Bike Path By Bristol Harbor

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Andreozzi-Lombardi – Barrington

  • Andreozzi Nature Preserve/Lombardi Park
  • Leann Drive, Barrington, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°44’26.69″N, 71°19’56.88″W
  • Last Time Hiked: August 20, 2016
  • Approximate distance hiked: 0.6 miles
  • Easy.

 

Along with many larger properties with trail systems, the Barrington Land Conservation Trust has several small properties throughout town, most do not have trails. These two small properties adjacent to the East Bay Bike Path do have trails however. The Andreozzi Nature Preserve has a yellow blazed trail that runs from Leann Drive to the Bike Path and a spur trail that leads off the main trail. A little bit of a walk north along the Bike Path is the trail head to Lombardi Park that has a short trail that leads to Little Echo Lake. Along the trail is a granite bench. There are signs along the Bike Path for each of the properties.

 

Trail maps can be found at: Andreozzi-Lombardi

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Footbridge at Andreozzi

Jacobs Point – Warren

Jacobs Point is in the extreme southwestern corner of Warren and is only accessible via the East Bay Bike Path. The property abuts the Rhode Island Audubon’s McIntosh Wildlife Refuge. There is a single out and back trail that runs from the bike path to the Warren River through a salt marsh and to the beach and point. There is an abundance of bird activity here as well as plenty of wildflowers. Though short in distance, the trail offers plenty of picture opportunities whether it be of wildlife or an open marsh with sailboats in the distance.

I did not find a trail map on-line.

A Stone Wall And Wild Flowers At Jacobs Point.

A Stone Wall At Jacobs Point.

George Redman Linear Park – Providence/East Providence

  • George Redman Linear Park – Washington Bridge
  • India Street, Providence, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°49’4.13″N, 71°23’30.03″W
  • Last Time Hiked: June 30, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.2 miles
  • Easy.

The first Washington Bridge was built over the Seekonk River in 1793. It was a covered drawbridge that connected Fox Point in Providence to Watchemoket Square in what is now East Providence. Since then several replacement spans were built along this stretch of the river. Today, you can walk across the Seekonk River on a section of the original 1930’s bridge that has been preserved. There are some informative boards near the center of the bridge explaining the history of the bridge and the surrounding area. The rest of the Washington Bridge that carries Interstate 195 over the river has been reconstructed. The linear park is made up of a bike path (part of the East Bay Bike Path) and a walking area with several park benches. The view to the south is the lower Seekonk River at India Point and Bold Point where it flows into the Providence River. The walk from India Point Park to Watchemoket Square is about six tenths of a mile. Longer distances can be added to this walk by adding India Point Park or continuing along the East Bay Bike Path.

I did not find a trail map on-line.

Looking Towards Providence Along The Linear Park.

Looking Towards Providence Along The Linear Park.

Bristol Waterfront – Bristol

Bristol is most famously known for its Independence Day celebrations. The town is host to the longest running 4th of July parade in the United States which was first celebrated in 1785, a mere nine years after the colonies declared their independence from Great Britain. Patriotism runs deep in this town and in the weeks leading up to Independence Day it really shows. Bristol is situated on the east side of Narragansett Bay and its harbor has always played an integral part of the town. Downtown Bristol is home to several historical building dating back to the 1700’s as well as many “Mom and Pop” shops. Bristol is a thriving waterfront town and today’s walk covers both the waterfront and some of the towns historical district. Starting at Independence Park, at the southern terminus of the East Bay Bike Path, I first followed Thames Street in a southerly direction, then turned left onto Franklin Street making my way slightly uphill to Hope Street. Along the way I passed the first of, literally, a town full of shops. I then turned right onto Hope Street. This stretch is lined with several historic houses, lantern streetlights, and large old trees. Most of the houses have plaques on them citing the dates they were built. The first on the right bears a date of 1730 and ahead just before the bank is a massive ginkgo tree. You will also notice the red, white, and blue line in the middle of the street. The line is painted throughout the town along the parade route. In the weeks leading up to Independence Day this stretch is overtaken with flags and banners. Just before Bradford Street on the left is the Andrew School. It is the first of several school buildings along the route of the walk. The Colt School is next on the left just after Bradford Street. Built in the early 1900’s by a prominent Bristol resident, it was donated to the town as a school. Also on the left is Linden Place, a large mansion built in 1810. On the right is the Rogers Free Library housed in a building built in 1877. Just before turning left onto State Street, I came to the Bradford-Diman-Norris House. Built in 1792, it replaced a structure that was burned by the British during the American Revolution. Following State Street, I passed several more houses that were built in the early 1800’s. I then crossed High Street, passing the Walley School on the right. Continuing east I made my way to Wood Street opposite St. Mary’s Church. Along the way on the right is the Bristol Common. On the left I would pass the Bristol Train of Artillery and another old school building which is currently home to the towns School Department. At Wood Street I then turned right and started to follow the path into the Common that leads to the Gazebo. I continued pass the gazebo toward the back of the brick building at the corner of High Street and Church Street. This building is the Byfield School. The school is now used by several artists and their studios including the aptly named Liberty Looks studio. Note, while walking through the common, the row of buildings along High Street. They are the back of the Walley School, the First Baptist Church, the former Bristol County Courthouse, and the Byfield School. I then crossed High Street heading west along Church Street. A fire station is to the left at the corner and the rest of the street is lined with more historical houses. About mid way down the street on the right is a chapel that is set back behind a house. Just before the intersection of Hope Street on the right is the St. Michaels Garden. Across the street is St. Michaels Church, built in 1861, it is the fourth church on this site. The first was also burned by the British during the American Revolution. Turning right onto Hope Street, I then came to a large stone building on the right. This is the Burnside Hall built in 1883. It was used as the Town Hall until 1969 and today it is a visitors center. You can stop in and get all the information you need from its friendly staff. I then continued along Hope Street, passing the Belvedere Hotel on the left, and then turned left onto State Street heading back to the waterfront. Crossing Thames Street, I followed the brick walkway to a restaurant along the water. Just to the north of the restaurant is the beginning of the public boardwalk that follows the edge of the harbor. The boardwalk passes a marina, a condominium building and a couple of restaurants before ending at Independence Park. From here I crossed the park back to parking area, stopping briefly at a plaque explaining Bristol’s role in the American Revolution. You could easily add more mileage to this walk by zigzagging the towns blocks. Just about every street in this area has a structure of historical significance. This walk just scratches the surface of the towns history.

Trail map can be found at: Bristol Waterfront.

Boardwalk Along Bristol's Waterfront

Boardwalk Along Bristol’s Waterfront

Haines Park – Barrington

 

Haines Park is one of the oldest State Parks in Rhode Island opening in 1911. At one time prior to the 1938 hurricane there was a pedestrian bridge crossing the cove to Crescent Park (which in the day was one of the largest amusement parks on the east coast). It is mostly known for today for its waterfront access to Bullocks Cove, picnic areas, farmers market, and its ball fields. Essentially its a quiet little community park with the East Bay Bike Path running through it. Today, a 90 degree day here in New England, I decided to hike the short but rather tranquil trails that lie to the east of the bike path and wrap around the ball fields and dog park. I started from a parking area on Narragansett Avenue just east of the bike path. The un-blazed trail leads into the woods for a bit before the first “major” intersection. I opted to go to the right staying parallel to the bike path. Many side trails veered off to the right to the bike path and many to the left toward the ball fields. After a bit I came to another intersection. I opted to take the lower path which turned east and then eventually north. This trail had a couple paths that led to some obvious wetlands. The trail eventually ended at an opening at the road. There was a trail to the left that I followed back as it ran parallel and above the trail I was previously on. This trail eventually led back to the main trail I came in on. I briefly explored a trail that led to the dog park. A very aware beagle made my presence known as I approached the gate. From here I retraced my steps back to the car. I came across several birds, squirrels, and chipmunks on this hike. I also noticed that the wild berries are in bloom.

I did not find a trail map on-line.

A Trail At Haines Park

A Trail At Haines Park

Providence Harbor Walk – Providence

  • Providence Harbor Walk/India Point Park
  • India Street, Providence, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°49’2.13″N,  71°23’49.40″W
  • First Time Hiked: November 30, 2013
  • Last Time Hiked: June 18, 2016
  • Approximate distance hiked: 2 miles
  • Fairy Easy
 

Providence has been going through a metamorphosis for the last 25 or so years and much of the area described in this walk has seen most of that change in the last few years. In fact some of that change is still happening. With that being said the description for this walk starts from the Community Boating Center along India Street and heads west towards the I-way Bridge. The reason being is that small stretch along India Street passes through an area that hasn’t been redeveloped yet and is still somewhat of an eye-sore. After passing the Community Boating Center you will pass the remains of what was once a bustling nightclub and marina that closed long ago. Shortly after that is the Providence Steamboat property, home of several tugboats that assist large ships entering Narragansett Bay. Most times at least one of the several tugs are docked here. The walk then turns right onto Bridge Street and travels under the I-way Bridge. The 400 foot arch is 80 feet high and serves as an appealing entrance to the upper Providence River that carries Interstate 195 over it. The bridge was built in 2007 as part of a project that relocated a mile and half stretch of Interstate 195 just south of the city. From here, across the river and just south of the bridge is Collier Point Park. Just north of the I-way Bridge is the Fox Point Hurricane Barrier, the first of its kind built in the United States. The structure built in the 1960’s protects downtown Providence from storm surges. Two hurricanes in the 20th century, being in 1938 and 1954, inundated the city with several feet of water. The city has not flooded since. After passing through the hurricane barrier there is a small park to the left. Every Columbus Day weekend the Pronk parade concludes here and the festivities carry well into the night. Across the river is one of the most recognizable and photographed structures in Providence. The Manchester Street Power Plant, with its towering stacks, creates electricity using three large turbines fueled by natural gas. The portion of the building to the extreme right is part of the original structure that was once fueled by coal. The newer portion of the building was built in the 1990’s. For those of you interested in checking out the city from the river, stop by the dock just below the Hot Club deck. Here is the home of the Providence River Boat Company. Tours of the city leave here on an hourly basis on most days. If you need to wait, grab a burger and beer from the Hot Club. (Trust me!! They are good!). Also along this stretch of Bridge Street is Lola’s and the Whiskey Republic. Across the street is Corliss Landing, one of the oldest buildings in the area, now mostly apartments and offices. At the end of the street and to the left is the Point Street Bridge. It was built in 1927 and is a swing bridge. It last opened in 1959 as the upper Providence River was no longer used by larger vessels. This walk now turns right and heads away from the Point Street Bridge, first crossing South Water Street and then South Main Street before turning right onto Benefit Street. This large open area was where Interstate 195 once snaked through the city. Some of the parcels are put aside for parks and others are slowly being redeveloped. After following a small section of Benefit Street a short bike path lies ahead. To the left is the backside of the Holy Rosary Church, another of Providences predominant structures. The short bike path starts a curve to the left keeping the South Main Street exit to the right and a small grassy area with artistic sculptures to the left. The bike path soon ends at the sidewalk of George M. Cohan Boulevard. This now fairly quiet street once served as the main through-way from the Point Street Bridge to points east. It was named after the playwright, composer and producer who was born in Providence. The 1942 Academy award winning film Yankee Doodle Dandy depicts his life. Following the sidewalk for a few hundred feet slightly uphill you soon come to the India Point Park Bridge. Turning right here you now cross the Interstate before entering the park. From the bridge you have good views of the upper reaches of Narragansett Bay. India Point Park has an interesting history of its own. It once served as a seaport, a crossroads, and lastly a metal scrap yard before becoming a waterfront park in the 1970’s. After crossing the footbridge, turn to the left and follow the paved footpath. It comes close to India Street before turning away from the street. You will find an interesting sculpture here of yesteryear. Next you will come to the entrance of the East Bay Bike Path. If you so choose, the bike path takes you up onto the Washington Bridge for a sweeping view of the Seekonk River below. After passing the entrance of the bike path continue straight and then stay to the left of the playground. At the next footpath turn right and follow it to the end. This will lead you to one of the least known, but most important historical sites in Rhode Island. This is where the founder of Rhode Island, Roger Williams, first step foot in Providence in 1636. He would later travel around India Point and Fox Point and then up the Providence River where he would found Providence. The path now turns south following the Seekonk River. In this area, over time, were several river crossings including a covered drawbridge that was built in 1793. All that remains today (other than the existing Washington Bridge) is the remnants of the India Point Railroad Bridge on the East Providence shoreline. This area of the park was at one time a rail yard. In fact the first railroad station built in Providence was built here. The remainder of this walk follows the shore of the river, passing the playground once again, before coming to a large wooden dock. This area once served as a seaport for larger vessels that couldn’t make it to the docks closer to downtown. Near the conclusion of this walk is a newer dock. It it is used primarily by recreational fishermen. You will find several informational boards throughout the park further explaining the vast history of this area.

 

Urban Skyline at India Point

Urban Skyline at India Point

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