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Best Trail Running in America: Historical Concord, Massachusetts

Just 22 miles north west of the bustling city of Boston, Massachusetts sits the quaint New England town of Concord. Known as the birthplace of the American Revolution, Concord is also home to many of American literature’s finest writers, such as Henry David Thoreau, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Louisa May Alcott (all of whom happen to be buried next to each other on Poet’s Ridge in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery.) Concord’s rolling hills, picturesque farms, flowing rivers, and idyllic ponds have inspired poets and revolutionaries for generations. These same qualities, along with its beautifully maintained trails make Concord a trail runner’s paradise.

The Minute Man National Historical Park and Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge can be combined for a nice 14 mile run. The moderate route includes 10 miles of the Battle Road Trail in the Minute Man National Historical Park and 3 miles of The Dike Trail in Great Meadows. A one mile section cuts behind Ripley School, through St. Bernard’s Cemetery and along C. Courtney Land Management area, connecting the two trails. Just before the Battle Road Trail ends at HWY128/I95 cut off onto the Fiske Hill Loop Trail and you’ll be casually turned around without having to come to an abrupt stop.

Route Summary:

  • Distance – 14 Miles
  • Elevation – 308 Feet
  • Difficulty – Moderate
  • Condition – Excellent
  • Route Finding – Easy

Start/Finish:

Begin and end the route at any number of parking lots/trailheads along Minute Man National Historical Park or park at Great Meadows Wildlife Refuge. (Note: Great Meadows plans to charge a parking fee starting Spring 2015). Park at the Meriam House Parking Lot located at the corner of Old Bedford Road and Lexington Road and you’ll never be too far from your car.

Screen Shot 2014-12-15 at 5.29.06 PM Historic Concord MA Trail Running Elevation

 

Points of Interest:

On the Battle Road Trail you’ll pass many historical markers, such as the Meriam House, the Hartwell Tavern and the Paul Revere Capture Site. Climb the fire lookout in the Great Meadows Wildlife Sanctuary parking lot for a panoramic view of the wetlands.

Useful Links:

Camera support provided by Nick Ruhlmann. Check out more of Nick’s media creations at his website – http://nickruhlmann.com.

 

About Kevin Riley

Kevin Riley has been a rock climbing and general outdoor enthusiast for over sixteen years, served as the associate publisher for Climbing and Urban Climber magazines, and co-founded the Denver-based non-profit, First Ascenders. He graduated from UMASS (Amherst).

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