Hidden Paradise II

August 7th, 2010 by Harrumpher Leave a reply »

The return trip for the other half of the hidden Neponset marsh trails was easier. I biked to the location rather than walked.

Also, unlike the first trip to the part with the seriously hidden entrance to the DCR land, anyone can find this nature path. Oddly enough, on my first trip, two teams were playing on the ball field. No one there seemed to have any idea when I asked about a trail into the marsh. Just as well…

nepmarshesPic Click Trick: Click on the map for a larger view. Use your browser back button or keys to return.

To duplicate my trip today, head to the ball field on Ventura Street in Dorchester. It’s a short walk from the Butler stop on the Mattapan trolley or off the Neponset bike trail. Just head south (up the hill) from the stop and down a block.

Then in the southwest corner of the field, go through the two missing sections of fence onto the path. At first, it looks impassable and too overgrown. There be no dragons.

As flat as the other side is, this one has trails over rolling hills and through woods beside the marsh grasses. There are several side trails with overlooks of the Neponset and marshes. As straight as you can go on a meandering, hilly path, that is to write, heading southwest, you end up across from the Milton Yacht Club.

woodtrailA geologist would have a good tale or two here. This is differs dramatically from the next marsh over. This one has numerous puddingstone outcroppings and rich, non-saline enough soil to support brush and trees in profusion.

I understand now why the canoeing guides told us this was prime, but hidden, picnic and nature peeping territory. Both marshes are commonwealth owned, DCR managed property. As such, they are in effect public parks. That public in this case seems almost entirely limited to birders.

If my friendly abutter who led me to the secret entryway is accurate, there’s 100 acres give or take on each side. Let’s think of each as the 100 Acre Marsh, like Milne’s 100 Aker Wood, without sentient stuffed animals.

I did not wade into the vague trails directly into the marsh, southeast of the gravelly path. My previous guide said the birders show at high tide when the wading birds and raptors are in their glory. He said they wear hip boots.

However, there’s plenty to enjoy for us non-twitches as well. It’s a beautiful, if short walk, quiet woods, numerous places to sit and read poetry to each other, and nice scenery, including birds in the wet or not as wet periods.

Moreover, this set of trails does not seem to attract indolent youth. I didn’t see a single Bud LITE can or condom on the trails. It’s just you, me, the picnic basket and the egrets.

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3 Responses

  1. Miss Grimke says:

    I would be interested in a tour.

  2. Uncle says:

    How’s the water level? The Ipswich is doing its usual late summer vanishing act, so we have an eye out for alternative paddles.

  3. Harrumpher says:

    The Neponset does rise and fall considerably with the tide, but unlike the Charles, this stretch from the chocolate factory never gets too low for canoes and kayaks. That written, the guides were sure to schedule our trips for high tides. Even so, the water wasn’t high enough to get over the rocks and head upstream toward Paul’s Bridge. Apparently that is a spring, snow melt and later after big rains thing.

    Yesterday, I got there at obvious low tide. The marina area at the MYC must be pretty deep. The ducks and small shore birds were happily mucking about and eating stranded fish and bugs. The wading birds were in the marsh. Yet, even the deepest boats were fully floating.

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