February 23, 2019 – Charles River Peninsula – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma, and I journeyed on three separate Adventures.  Our first one was to the Charles River Peninsula in Needham, Massachusetts.  The Charles River Peninsula is a 30 acres nature preserve that is owned and managed by the Trustees of Reservations.  It is a true peninsula, being surrounded by the Charles River.  The Peninsula rises to become an open field.  This land was previously used for farming.

We had a simple Adventure to the Charles River Peninsula, on a surprisingly warm winter day.  We were exuberant  to visit another one of the Trustee properties, our new favorite spots to explore.  Our Adventure started bright and early on another grey winter day. We were pleased to almost have the reserve to ourselves, with only several other visitors here and there.  We found the Peninsula to have somewhat of a city feel, with houses around many of the borders, and utility poles, however still quite serene.

I was relieved that I had glanced at the map before we left as the trails were not marked.  The official entrance was announced by a small boardwalk where we began our hike around the loop.  We were happy to see footprints on the route, guiding us to the trail.  There was snow on much of the trail, and some patches of ice. The trail was not very interesting as it really was just one big circle around the field, with little changes in landscape.  Although the preserve was a bit dull we ALWAYS make memories and find things we appreciate on our Adventures.  At the Peninsula we especially enjoyed the loop near the water with River views, the numerous bird feeders scattered throughout the property, and the several large rocks for some Wilma jumps.  I think sometimes my expectations are too high, however, I really can never complain about a walk with Shadow and Wilma, my PERFECT company.

I found the Charles River Peninsula through the Trustees of Reservations which I have been learning about more in the last month or so.  I would encourage you to check out the Trustees of Reservations, as you can search for properties in your area.  Many of the land, trails, and properties are absolutely lovely, and the Trustees of Reservations does wonderful work to preserve the land and history throughout Massachusetts. So although the Charles River Peninsula did not peak my interest, we still ALWAYS enjoy our time in the great outdoors.  We are glad we could visit today (Rating:  2).

 

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February 2, 2019 – Hemlock Gorge Reservation – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma, and I Adventured to the Hemlock Gorge Reservation in Newton, and Needham, Massachusetts.  Hemlock Gorge Reservation is an urban state park that is approximately 16 acres in size.  It is on the Charles River and is especially known for the Echo Bridge, and a waterfall.

We had a unique Adventure to the Hemlock Gorge Reservation on this dark and chilly February day.  I found this Reservation when planning a visit to the Echo Bridge, soon finding that the Bridge was located in the Hemlock Gorge Reservation.  We began our journey following a very simple, snow covered trail.  The trail was in close range to the Charles River, located to our right.  The trail weaved up and around, soon leading us to a lovely waterfall.  The waterfall sang a beautiful song, and was framed by frozen ice, and snow covered icicles, quite the picturesque scene.  We enjoyed the sound of the falls, and the winter scene before turning to our left where we saw the Echo Bridge.  The Bridge was grand in size, with arches below.  We walked to the water’s edge to get a better view as Shadow and Wilma enjoyed the ice and some sips from the River.

We then headed to the top of the Bridge and noticed we could walk across the top, displaying a lovely view from above.  We met a nice young lady, with a sweet little dog named Charlie.  The dogs said hello and she filled us in on the area, which was great as there really was little detailed information available.  We then continued over the Echo Bridge, down the stairs, and across the street to the well known platform said to have a special “Echo”.  I was completely awed at the grand echo from my voice, and quite humored by the dogs’ reaction looking around as they heard their names.  I attempted a video below, but the echo is very faint in the video.  It was quite the fun moment, definitely meeting all my expectations from my readings.

After enjoying the echo for a bit we headed back to a trail over to the “Island”.  We took a wrong turn before finding the trail leading to the “Island”.  There was a simple, but beautiful snow-covered bridge crossing over to this location.  We walked around a bit checking out the view of the River and the Echo Bridge from afar.  The busy roads were not far, reminding us that we were in an urban park, however there were very little visitors making it quiet in its own special way.

Although the Hemlock Gorge Reservation was a very simple urban park, it really did exceed my expectations.  I still am awed by the echo, loved the walk high atop the bridge, and enjoyed the picturesque winter waterfall.  If you are in the area definitely a fun little place to check-out (Rating:  3).