Posts Tagged ‘ Great Swamp Management Area ’

Worden Pond – South Kingstown

  • Worden Pond – Great Swamp Management Area
  • Great Neck Road, South Kingstown, RI
  • Trailhead:  41°28’8.48″N, 71°34’46.65″W
  • Last Time Hiked: April 17, 2020
  • Approximate distance hiked: 4.5 miles
  • Fairly easy with slight elevation.


The Great Swamp Management Area offers a little of everything. This hike will take you to the shores of Worden Pond and over the “heights” of Great Neck. Starting at the parking area, follow the road pass the kiosk. It will pass areas of swamp and small ponds before coming to the first split. Here there is a stone memorial marker for Dr. John Mulleedy. Stay to the left at this split and continue ahead. This road will soon pass under the power lines and gradually climb up hill for a bit pass stone walls and holly trees mixed among the other pines and deciduous. At the next split there is another stone memorial marker, this one for George McCahey. Again stay to the left at the split and continue ahead. You will notice that this road is a little less traveled. Not too far ahead is yet another split. There is no marker at this one and again stay to the left and continue ahead. When the hill finally crests (approximately 1.6 miles from the start of the hike) look for a side spur trail to the left. This is well worth checking out. In just a few foot steps you will come to a ledge that overlooks the land and swamp below. Take a moment here and then retrace your steps to the main trail and turn left. The road now winds downhill passing boulders, ledge, and mountain laurel before bending to the left and to a cove at the pond wedged between Stony Point and Case Point. Geese an ducks are a common site here and may startle you as you approach. The large concrete slab here is all that remains of a seaplane hanger. After checking out the pond for a bit make your way back a few feet and turn left. This spot is particularly muddy after stormy weather. This is a swamp after all!! The trail soon turns to the north and climbs quickly uphill. After two small fields on the right and one on the left you will come to the next split. Turn left here and follow the left side of the field, pass a stone wall at the treeline, and then follow the right side of the next field. You will then turn right onto a well defined road. This road will take you over some of the highest points of the property, known as Great Neck. You will start to come across several fields, particularly on the left. These fields offer clearings that give you sweeping views of the western portions of the property including the wildlife marsh that is featured on the Great Swamp hike. These fields are known to be a haven for American Woodcocks and Northern Flickers among several other birds (thank you URI student for that info!!). At the next intersection turn left and the road starts to descend. There are still great views over the fields on the left. As the road reaches the bottom of the hill you will pass under the power lines once again. Shortly after that is a small pond on the left. At the next intersection stay to the right and continue to follow the power lines until the road veer to the left away from them. Pass another field on the left and you will soon come to the Mulleedy Marker once again. Stay to the left here and follow the road back to the parking area.


Map can be found at: Worden Pond.


Worden Pond








Great Swamp Monument – South Kingstown

  • Great Swamp Monument – Great Swamp Management Area
  • Great Swamp Monument Road, South Kingstown, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°28’39.46″N, 71°35’44.41″W
  • First Time Hiked: March 15, 2014
  • Last Time Hiked: November 20, 2021
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.5 miles
  • Easy.

Rhode Island has a long history and it is all around. In Providence and Newport we pass sites regularly that we don’t give much thought about. These sites date back to colonial times. We drive through historic villages along main roads such as Wickford. But one of the oldest sites of Rhode Island history is only accessible by foot and hidden three quarters of a mile into a swamp. You have to hike to it. The Great Swamp Monument is the site of a battle during the King Phillips War in December 1675. This battle, fought between colonists from Rhode Island, Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, and Plymouth against the Narragansett Tribe, marked the beginning of the end of the war. I had made an attempt to do this walk last summer but was confronted by a swarm of deer flies. So it went back on the list for a cooler day. The walk starts at a gate a few hundred feet off of South County Trail on Great Swamp Monument Road. The remainder of the road to the monument is closed to traffic. The walk is along the dirt road that traverses through the swamp and forest. At the monument there is a plague explaining the battle. After spending a little time at the monument I retraced my steps back to the car. This area is open to hunting. Be sure to wear orange during hunting season.

Trail map can be found at: Great Swamp Monument.

Great Swamp Monument

Great Swamp Monument

Great Swamp – South Kingstown

  • Great Swamp Wildlife Management Area
  • Great Neck Road, South Kingstown, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°28’8.16″N, 71°34’46.54″W
  • Last Time Hiked: June 28, 2013
  • Approximate distance hiked: 4.7 miles
  • Easy.

I have a small group of friends who will be joining me for a summer (and into the autumn) full of Friday afternoon hikes and this week we kicked it off by having a friend who traveled approximately 11,400 miles from Kuala Lumpur to be here. The area that we hiked through has significant history. In December of 1675, a battle between the Native Americans and English Colonists was fought nearby. Today Great Swamp is a wildlife management area owned by the State. We started the hike from a parking area at the end of Great Neck Road and followed a crushed stone road into the management area. At the first fork we followed the road, mostly grass now, to the left. (The road to the right we would exit on) We crossed under a set of power lines and walked by a few fields. Along the way we came across what might have been coyote tracks. Along the road were remnants of old stone walls covered heavily with brush and ferns. It was a very humid day and mosquitos were in excess. Bug spray is a must here. At the next intersection we turned right following another grass covered road through a tunnel of trees. This area is known as Great Neck and is the highest point in the swamp. There were stone walls along this road as well. At the next fork we went left following the road to the beginning of the impoundment. Here there is a oddly shaped rock you could use for a rest if you so choose.  This is about the halfway point of this hike. The next part of the hike follows the edge of the water for quite a while crossing under power lines once again. Perched at the top of several of the poles were osprey nests. One was very active with two ospreys taking turns being in the nest. They were obviously well aware of our presence. There we also sounds of frogs along this road and there were many several species of smaller birds as well as Canadian geese. Daisies and black eyed susans were in bloom as well. The road eventually left the waters edge and made it’s way back into the wooded area. We came across a frog at this point. At the next intersection we went left onto the road that eventually came back to the first fork we came across (Note: it appears that a path continues straight along the power lines. Take the road that veers to the left.) From here we retraced our steps back to the car.

Trail map can be found at: Great Swamp

A Road At Great Swamp

A Road At Great Swamp

The Impoundment

The Impoundment