The Appalachian Mountain Club AMC has cornered New England’s trail guide market and with More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts the reader is able to find 47 new walks throughout Eastern Massachusetts that weren’t covered in the original book, Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts.
Wait a second, is there anything natural in Eastern Massachusetts?
If you’ve ever visited Eastern Massachusetts or the Boston area, you might be wondering where there’s enough to fill up two books of nature walks. Well, there are actually a significant number of smaller nature reserves, reservations and state lands that provide plenty of opportunities to enjoy nature, if you just know where to look when you are in the area and the author, Michael Tougias definitely knows his places for a nature walk.
You won’t find any major mountains (maybe a hill or two!), or even major hikes for that matter, but there are plenty of interesting and enjoyable walks in Eastern Massachusetts that will give you a chance to get out and stretch your legs. You might not find the wilds of New Hampshire, but sometimes it is nice to only have to drive a few minutes and then be out walking.
What’s covered in the book?
More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts covers the regions surrounding Boston including towns north, south and west of the city. The book also contains an expanded section on Cape Cod. Overall, the book includes information on (I’ve got the towns mentioned specifically in each region in parenthesis):
-North of Boston (Manchester-By-The-Sea, Gloucester, Rockport, Beverly, and Andover)
-West of Boston (Northborough, Hopkinton, Millis, Sherborn, Lincoln, Dedham, Needham, Newton, and Weston)
-Southeastern Massachusetts (Wrentham, Franklin, Quincy, Milton, Randolph, Canton, Berkley, Assonet, Abington, Taunton, Bridgewater, Seekonk, Easton, Fall River, Cohasset, Hingham, Plymouth, Weymouth, Marshfield, and Dartmouth)
-Cape Cod (Sandwich, Mashpee, Brewster, Yarmouth, Eastham, Barnstable, South Wellfleet, and Wellfleet)
And if you’re wondering how many towns can be covered in just 47 walks, many of the areas that are described throughout the book extend into neighboring towns.
There’s a little less geographical coverage than you’ll find in the original Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts, but on the whole, the book does a good job of covering most of the areas that are adjacent to the Boston region, especially in Southeastern Massachusetts.
What’s the book good for?
More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts begins with an introduction that talks about the natural and the interesting throughout Eastern Massachusetts. There’s information on the animals you might see along your hike and there’s also information hiking with children. Following the introduction, you’ll find a locater map that provides a reference point for all of the walks in the book. Next to the locater map is a complete list of all of the hikes.
Then there’s a handy chart that gives the reader and idea of what each walk offers. It’s set up in a table format. Each hike is covered and there’s a check for each trail if there is a: river or brook; ocean, lake or pond; scenic vista; rocky ledges; wooden bridge or boardwalk; and special geology. It’s a good idea and it gives you an immediate idea of what you’ll find along a planned trip, or help to find a trip to suit your tastes at the moment. Each trail entry also includes information on what page of the book the description is found and the ownership of the trail.
The trail descriptions are broken down into chapters that follow the areas covered above (North of Boston, West of Boston, Southeastern Massachusetts and Cape Cod). Each trail description begins with a small map and overview of where the trail is located and how to get to it. The trail descriptions are thorough and no one, including novices, should have any trouble following the trails. The descriptions include the major features that you will come across, as are any steep pitches, trail junctions, and side trails. Beyond the actual trail description, More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts includes information on the area’s natural history and some local human history.
The book doesn’t include any separate maps like the more detailed trail guides that the AMC publishes, instead there are small maps are included directly in the each of the trail descriptions. However, none of the trails described in More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts, are that difficult to follow that you would need to carry the book or a map with you.
At the end of the book you’ll find a quick biography of the author, information on the AMC and an alphabetical listing (index) of all the areas that are described in the book.
Do I need this book?
If you are interested in finding some of the many the natural areas in Eastern Massachusetts and want to enjoy them, then you should probably get a copy of this book. Honestly, many of these places are small, or so well hidden away that even if you lived in the town, you might not have been aware there was even a trail there.
When I started reading the original book, I discovered quite a few places that I had just been driving past and had never even given them a second thought for walking and exploring. Now with More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts, I’ve found even more trips and the book has shown me that I don’t need to always travel so far to get a dose of mother nature.
More Nature Walks in Eastern Massachusetts is an indispensable guide to the Eastern Massachusetts natural areas and the associated nature walks. This book works for both the novice and the experienced person, and everyone else in between because many of these areas are like finding a needle in a haystack.
Basically, If you have ever wondered where you could possibly go for a walk that is fairly close to Boston, then you should pick up a copy to help find them.