Posts Tagged ‘ Waterfalls ’

Blackstone River Central – Lincoln/Cumberland

  • Blackstone River Bikeway – Central
  • New River Road, Lincoln, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°58’5.51″N, 71°28’1.02″W
  • Last Time Hiked: May 20, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 3.0 miles
  • Easy.

Starting where we left off a couple weeks ago (Blackstone River North), we continued our walk along the Blackstone River Bikeway. The first mile or so of this walk is along a stretch of the bike path that is flanked by the railroad on the right and the river on the left. Most of it is fenced, but there are occasional trailheads that appear along the left. The Albion Dam soon appears on the river to the left. The water cascades over the dam then ripples downstream under the School Street Bridge. This is a good spot to relax and take in the scene. At the halfway point of this walk we crossed a bridge that spans the river. We were now entering Cumberland and the bike path climbs a small hill. There is some impressive looking ledge at this location. Soon we came to a railroad crossing where the bike path switches sides. Do not walk down the tracks. These are active tracks and occasionally a freight train will come rumbling through. We then continued along the bike path crossing under Interstate 295. About 2/10 of a mile after the interstate a path appears on the right. It leads to the river. Another path follows the river downstream pass the Ashton Dam. This path loops back to the bike path. We then continued south along the bike path crossing under the arched bridge that carries Route 116 over the Blackstone River. We then came to the Ashton Mill complex where we concluded this leg of the Blackstone River walk.

Trail map can be found at: Blackstone River Central.

The Albion Dam Along The Blackstone River.

The Albion Dam Along The Blackstone River.

Spencer Rock – Coventry

  • Spencer Rock
  • Lewis Farm Road, Coventry, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°41’24.97″N, 71°45’41.28″W
  • Last Time Hiked: May 12, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 2.0 miles
  • Easy with some slight elevation.

In western Coventry the Moosup River cascades over a rock formation creating a waterfall. This large boulder the width of the river is known as Spencer Rock. The beautiful natural feature is accessible from various locations throughout the Nicholas Farm Management Area, but for this hike, I choose the most direct and easiest route that follows the blue blazes of the North South trail. I started the hike from Lewis Farm Road where the Trestle Trail crosses and started hiking westward. The Trestle Trail is an old railroad bed that once was used as part of the Providence, Hartford & Fishkill Railroad. The trail to the east is under development and is becoming a bike path. This part of the trail will one day connect to the Coventry Greenway and the Washington Secondary Bike Path. But for now it remains a dirt path that was once a railroad. Within in a couple hundred feet I was crossing a narrow trestle bridge. The trestle is now paved and has chain link fence on each side for safety. It sits high above the Moosup River. From here I observed a squawking crow among the tree tops. Just on the other side of the bridge in the middle of the trail you will find a square chunk of granite with a drill hole in it. This is a granite bound used by surveyors to mark property lines and corners. With that being said, there are many side trails along this stretch, however the trails to the south lead off the management property. I continued straight along the old railroad bed that is high above the surrounding terrain. Following the blue blazes, I soon turned right onto a trail the is surrounded by mostly pine trees with an occasional oak tree and some mountain laurel. The birds were very active along this stretch. I saw several wrens here and in the distance I could here frogs. I then came upon an small grass filled field that seemed to be a haven for dragonflies. The trail bends slightly to the right, back through the trees, and down a small rocky section before coming to a dirt road. Here, look for a white pole to the right with blue blazes on it. Beyond the pole is a narrow path that leads up and over a small hill to another dirt road. I then continue straight along the road a few steps through an open area to the river where Spencer Rock is. The rock is a large boulder that spans across the river and creates a small waterfall and the flow is very dependent on weather. I then spent some time lingering and taking in the beauty of this location for a while before retracing my steps back to the starting point. This entire hike follows the blue blazes of the North South Trail and the area is open to hunting. Be sure to wear orange during hunting season.

Trail map can be found at: Spencer Rock.

The Moosup River At Spencer Rock.

The Moosup River At Spencer Rock.

Escoheag Hill – West Greenwich

  • Escoheag Hill
  • Hazard Road, West Greenwich, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°37’2.58″N, 71°46’51.15″W
  • Last Time Hiked: May 10, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 3.5 miles
  • Moderate with some significant elevation.

In the northwestern part on the Arcadia Wildlife Management is Escoheag Hill. The hill overlooks the valley that the Falls River runs through and once was the home to the Pine Top Ski Area. This hike will take you through the former ski area, over Escoheag Hill, then along part of the Tippecansett Trail, a stop at Stepstone Falls and finally along the base of the hill along the North South Trail. We started this hike from the gate at Hazard Road. The first part of the hike follows a sandy trail that is blazed blue. The open field that we passed through was once the parking lot for the ski area. Today nature has overtaken it with tall grass and shrubs. Following the wide main trail we soon came to a split. The blue blazed trail to the left we would return on. We choose to continue to the right. In a short distance we beared to the left onto a trail that looped back to the right. Ahead of us was one of the former ski slopes on Escoheag Hill. This area is a little confusing, GPS, a good map (I was using the Great Swamp Press map), and a compass couldn’t hurt to have. There are several trails (ski slopes) that lead to the top of the hill. For the most part they converge at the same point at the top. The trails here are also a little overgrown. We then climbed up Escoheag Hill along the former ski slope until we reached the top. Stop a few times along the way to catch your breath and to turn around and see the view. When we reached the top we started looking for the remains of an old shed. Here a pine covered trail leads away from the ski slopes then turns slightly left. This is the main trail then continues over Escoheag Hill. There are several trails that spur off of it, however, you will want to follow the main/widest trail through this area. The trail passes some of the remains of the ski area, as well as stone walls and open fields. The trail also hugs the property line. Several houses can be seen along this stretch. Please do not cross onto their properties. This trail finally comes to Falls River Road. Here we turned left and started following the yellow blazes of the Tippecansett Trail. The blazes would lead us back into the woods for a while before bringing us out to another road. Continuing following the yellow blazes we soon came to the backpackers campsite. It was once a large shelter for hikers and campers complete with two fireplaces. Today, unfortunately, it was a pile of debris. Sometime over the winter (I was here in October of 2014), it collapsed. Southern New England did endure a rather tough winter and the shelter may have been a victim of it. From here we followed the yellow blazes to the end of the Tippecansett Trail, again at Falls River Road. At this location is one of the most beautiful spots in Rhode Island. We took a rather lengthy break here at the cascading Stepstone Falls and watched (and listened) to the water tumble over the series of short waterfalls. After our break we then began the lest leg of the hike. We started following the blue blazed North South Trail away from the bridge along Falls River Road. The trail soon turns right into the woods and follows the base of Escoheag Hill. This stretch is blazed blue the remainder of the way back to the parking area and several sections are quite muddy. Be careful of your footing along here as it is rather rocky as well. We soon came to the fork where we made our initial right turn. From here we retraced our steps back through the old parking area and out to where the car was parked. This area is open to hunting and orange is required to be worn during hunting season. We also came across snakes, toads, and chipmunks along this hike.

Trail map can be found at: Escoheag Hill.

Spring In Bloom From Escoheag Hill.

Spring In Bloom From Escoheag Hill.

Blackstone River North – Woonsocket/North Smithfield/Lincoln

  • Blackstone River Bikeway – North
  • Davison Avenue, Woonsocket, RI
  • Trailhead: 42° 0’2.26″N, 71°29’54.91″W
  • Last Time Hiked: May 6, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 3.1 miles
  • Easy.

I’ve decided to walk the Blackstone River Bikeway and take in the sights along the way. I’ve broken it up into three sections, all around 3 miles in length. The route I describe will be a one way route, therefore, if you are not doing a car spot you must double the distance listed. I also decided to start in Woonsocket and work my way south for this walk. Starting from the parking area on Davison Avenue, the bike path first follows an access road to the athletic complex. Soon we were passing a soccer field and then following the bike path that lies between the Blackstone River and the Providence & Worcester railroad tracks. Along the bike path there are mile markers. The distances listed are the miles to Providence. Interesting enough there are mile markers along the railroad as well. The “P” stands for Providence and the “W” stands for Worcester. We came across some ducks and swans in some of the inlets of the river. The trees were in spring bloom and the colors were reminiscence of autumn. Next we came to a granite marker with the names of the three towns that converge here. Soon we were passing under the highway bridge that carries Route 99 over the Blackstone. From under the bridge you can get a sense of how deep the valley is here by how high the bridge is. We then came to an area along the river that had a channel next to it. This is one of the sections of what is left of the Blackstone Canal. The canal was built in the 1820’s to connect Providence and Worcester. It would remain in operation until the late 1840’s. By then the railroad had become the primary means of transportation. Most of the canal today has been filled in or is covered in thick brush. The final highlight of this portion of the walk is the Manville Dam. It was built in 1868 and a few years later a mill was built at this site. The mill at the time was the largest textile mill in the United States. We then continued passing under Manville Hill Road and making our way to the parking lot off of New River Road. A couple weeks later we would continue our walk onto the next section of the bike path.

Trail map can be found at: Blackstone River North.

Manville Dam.

Manville Dam.

Valley Falls – Cumberland

This suburban park sits at the extreme southern end of Cumberland along the Blackstone River. The park is a maze of paths that wanders through the ruins of a former textile mill. Today, all that is left of the mill are some stone foundations and the raceways that were built. Another feature of this park is the dam along the Blackstone River. The park is technically the southern terminus of the Blackstone River Bicycle Path. For more information about the site and surrounding area click here.

I did not find a trail map on-line.

Valley Falls Heritage Park

Valley Falls Heritage Park

Old Mountain Field – South Kingstown

  • Old Mountain Field Hiking Trails/Broad Rock Bike Trail
  • St. Dominic Road, South Kingstown, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°27’5.71″N, 71°28’54.57″W
  • Last Time Hiked: March 25, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.5 miles
  • Easy with some slight elevation.

 

We started this walk from the parking area of the Broad Rock Ball Fields. There is a short bike path that leads from the fields to Old Mountain Road. We followed the bike path for about two-tenths of a mile looking for a trail on the left. We then turned at the trail and started heading downhill turning slightly to the right and passing a stone wall. We followed the trail to the bottom of the hill where it ended. We then turned right following the yellow blazed trail that loops around Indian Run Reservoir. The trail first continues through the woods before coming to a horseshoe dam and waterfall. A bridge crosses the dam. The trail then leads back into the woods on the other side of the reservoir. There are several sections of boardwalks along this stretch. After completing the short loop trail, we retraced our steps back up the trail we came in on and back to the car. We came across several ducks at the reservoir.

 

Trail map can be found at: Old Mountain Field.

A Thawing Indian Run Reservoir.

A Thawing Indian Run Reservoir.

 

Notte Park/Camp Meehan – North Providence/Lincoln

  • Governor John Notte Memorial Park/Camp Meehan
  • Douglas Pike, North Providence, RI
  • Trailhead: 41°52’17.16″N, 71°27’51.35″W
  • Last Time Hiked: March 21, 2015
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.3 miles
  • Easy.

 

This walk covers two properties in two towns. The first property in North Providence is the Governor Notte Park. This property features ball fields and tennis courts. The second property is Camp Meehan which has been recently acquired by the Town of Lincoln. The abutting properties border Wenscott Reservoir and together offer a short and easy walk of just over a mile. The walk starts from a small parking area by the reservoir. The walking path soon crosses and dam and waterfall at a bridge. At the time of this walk, the ground was still covered in snow, so I followed mostly paved areas. After crossing the bridge I stayed to the right of the blue painted brick building and followed a road. I then turned left, keeping the reservoir to the left. I soon came to a parking area with a new building being built. Ahead is a paved path that leads into Camp Meehan. Here I crossed into Lincoln and followed the path. The path is about 4/10 of a mile long and winds through an area of pines. The path eventually ends at Angell Road. From here I retraced my steps back to the car.

 

I did not find a trail map on-line.

Bridge Crossing The Dam And Waterfall

Bridge Crossing The Dam And Waterfall

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