The 93-acre Plymouth River tract, formerly the Schirmer Farm, falls under four jurisdictions. The northern section, with an athletic field, six tennis courts, a small pond and some wooded upland around Plymouth River School, is controlled by the School Department (HSD). Adjacent open space is held by the Board of Selectmen (TOH). The Recreation Commission (HRC) oversees a playing field in the center of the complex. The Conservation Commission (HCC) holds the southern section including open woods and marsh bordering the Plymouth River and upper reaches of Cushing Pond. Not far away are two HCC wetlands parcels at Oakcrest Road and Ward Street: the 4 acres acquired in 1986 and adjoining 5 acres acquired in 2002 connect through Black Rock and buffer tributaries to Cushing Pond. They have no formal trails or parking.

The Plymouth River Complex is located on the east side of Ward Street between High and Cushing Streets. Look for the Margetts Field sign at the entrance to a parking lot and athletic field. Drive toward the left side of the parking lot and then turn right into a second parking lot toward a second athletic field. Drive to the far end of this second parking lot and park in the northeast corner of the lot, furthest from the street, in front of a black chain link fence. Walk to your right along the fence. At the end of the fence, turn left and walk along the side of the athletic field to begin the 0.92 mile walk. GPS coordinates 42.20609818589366, -70.90213792823546

In a few hundred feet turn right on the trail down a slope and across a stream. The stream flows from the north into the Plymouth River. The surrounding land is in the Weir River watershed and the flow eventually ends up in the Weir River. Stay right on the well-defined trail as it continues east and then north around a small hill. The trail provides for a pleasant walk amid woods of pine and oak trees. When you approach neighborhood housing on your right you will turn left at a fork in the trail. This section of the trail will continue around the hill along the stream on your right. You will turn right and cross back over the stream and continue up the slope back to the edge of the athletic field. Turn right and follow the trail at the edge of the field to the northwest corner of the field where you will enter the woods. Walk through the woods, passing over a stream, until you approach the back of the Plymouth River School. Look to your right for the entrance to “Storybook Trail” with interpretive boards describing the flora and fauna in the woods. At the end of the interpretive trail, stay to the right and walk along the trail behind a residential area. When you reach the end of the interpretive trail stay to the right, and in a short distance, turn right again repeating your walk along the hill with the stream on the right and turning right, across the stream and back to the field. At the field turn left and back to the parking lot.

PlymouthRiverCushingPond

Recommended Trail Activities: Walking, Hiking, Trail Biking  Length: .9  Route Type: Trail (Narrow)  Difficulty (Grade/Surface): Easy  Parking: Adequate  Dog Restrictions: Allowed  Ancillary Activities: Cross-country skiing, Snowshoeing, Birding, Hunting (permission may be required), Camping (permission may be required), Picnic

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