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Hiking–Middlesex Fells Rock Circuit Trail

November 23, 2010

The other weekend, Hubs and I went hiking at Middlesex Fells Reservation.  We did the 3.7 miles Rock Circuit Trail.  Based on its name, we should have known that we would be dealing with a lot of rocks.  Nope, Ph.D what?  The climbing up and down off rocks shocked us!  Aside from the rocks, it would have been an absolutely stunning hike if we had gone about 3 weeks earlier.  Instead of trees full of changing leaves.  We got lots of fallen leaves on top of the rocks.  That made for some pretty dangerous conditions.  I would definitely recommend going earlier in the fall.  The fallen leaves made the trail pretty difficult. Spoiler alert, we made it out alive.


Instead of going around large rocks, the trail would always tell us to climb up on the rocks.  I’m glad we followed the markers up onto the rocks.  Look at the views it gave us!  You might not be able to see, but look carefully and you’ll see the Boston skyline.



With no one around, I set my camera on auto timer atop a rock.  Oops, I accidentally set it for continuous shooting.  Nevertheless, I thought it made for a fun little series.

Rock Climb Trail

Here’s the view from another rock we climbed.


Here, Hub heads down the trail on the other side of the gigantic rock.


Fun trail, but it was really tough on my knee.  I have a recurring knee condition that really made the climbing on and off of rocks really painful by the end. 


At one point, we ran into a clearing with this pile of rocks.  In 1899, MIT set up an observatory atop this mountain.  All that is left today are these rocks. 


Check out how steep these rocks are!  Ok, maybe I positioned the camera a at an angle to make it look steeper.  Maybe not, take the hike and you can find out for yourself  Smile with tongue out 

Rock Climb Trail1

This trail also had several ponds and reservoirs.  We didn’t see any animals, but we saw plenty of plant life.  Check out the funky fungus like thing I found growing on this tree trunk.  We also saw a random water tower.  The cool orange hue is actually all rust.

Rock Climb Trail2

Note to those attempting this trail.  Unlike most trails that I have been on, the trail markings here were different.  The trick is to understand that the carrot markings are NOT arrow heads.  For example, this photo below shows a white spray painted carrot mark.  (They have to stray paint since you’re climbing up and down rocks and not dirt/trees that are easier to mark.)  You might think that the carrot is pointing for your to walk straight to the upper left.  Wrong.  It actually is telling you to round the corner.  Go straight, then make a left hand turn.  It’s actually a pivot marking.  If you see a white spray painted line, that’s a path.  Walk in that direction.  Once you figure it out, it’s very easy to follow.


Have you been hiking lately?  What types do you have for late fall hiking? 


From → Life

  1. Ohh I want to go hiking soon!

    Daphne and I got lost here. Um, twice. And once she ran into a pond and wouldn’t come out for an hour. Sooo I’m pretty cautious about hiking with her now.

    All that aside, if you ever want some canine company we’ll hand her over to you. And if you ever want human company let me know that too!

  2. Wow! Very savage. 😉

    My guy and I are going to be visiting the Jack London State Historic Park very soon, and I think he plans on hiking… 😛 There’s also a huge park right next to the place where he lives, so hey! Maybe the wedding workout should start there.

  3. Looks like such a fun hike, I love climbing rocks (even when the trail doesn’t make me!). And those gorgeous leaves! We just don’t get those out here in Cali, although I really enjoyed seeing fall first hand in North Carolina 2 weeks ago.

  4. You are braver than me, those rocks look so steep! Looks like you had some great views though so it’s worth the risk. 😉

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