By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Category: Outdoors Page 1 of 5

North Shore art

I took one of my favorite rides Saturday — from Danvers Center along the rail trail and then east and north to Wenham, Hamilton and Bradley Palmer State Park, south to Route 97 and back along the rail trail from the Topsfield Fairgrounds to Danvers, a little over 18½ miles. I also cruised around the Pingree School and took pictures of some of the outdoor art installations. Enjoy!

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“On Your Mark,” by Michael Aldred and Tim Johnson

“Guitar,” by José Criollo

Unlabeled as far as I could tell

“Think and Be Free,” by Dale Rogers

“Fintasia,” by Steve Heller

The Sudbury leg of the Bruce Freeman Trail is open, sort of

The end of the line, just a few minutes north of Boston Post Road

The Bruce Freeman Trail, a bike path that currently runs from Lowell to Concord, is about to get a lot longer. On Saturday I rode from Acton south to Powder Mill Road in West Concord, where the trail was closed, as it was last year. This time, though, I could see that there were people on the other side using it, so I schlepped my bike over the road and back down to the trail. From there the trail continued another 5 miles into Sudbury, where it came to a dead stop just a short distance from Boston Post Road.

I can’t imagine why the opening at Powder Mill is still closed off. The Sudbury leg, which brings the total length of the trail to about 21 miles, is fully paved and fenced and looks like all it needs is a few finishing touches. There were as many people using it south of Powder Mill as north of it. In any case, I’m sure it will be officially open soon. Construction continues, and the next step will consist of building it out from Sudbury to Framingham.

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Around West Medford

It’s the first snowstorm of 2023-’24. I just got back from a bit of tramping around. I immediately got a question on Facebook: What is the Slave Wall? So here you go.

The Slave Wall

Lower Mystic Lake

Wooded area near the lake

Faceless encounter

Hiking the Blue Hills

Great hike in the Blue Hills today led by Marc Hurwitz, our intrepid Appalachian Mountain Club guide. I hadn’t been there since I was a Cub Scout leader, and trust me, that was a very long time ago.

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Elliot Tower, closed for renovations

The weather station on the summit of Great Blue Hill

The GBH transmitter on the summit of Great Blue Hill. Do you know what “GBH” stands for? Think about it for a moment.

Boston skyline from the observatory on top of the weather station

Weather gear on top of the observatory

Chia Shen, Cathie Ghorbani and me. Marc took the photo. You may know that Marc is a food journalist for NBC Boston and for his own blog, Boston Restaurant Talk. Like all good restaurant reviewers, he travels incognito.

Heading down from the summit

Warm day, icy swamp

I hiked nearly six miles in Willowdale State Forest this afternoon — the first time I’ve been there since last May. Even though we had just one day of frigid weather followed by a week of unseasonably warm days, the swamps were still frozen over.

A snowy walk through Medford

A four-mile-plus stroll through Medford in the first measurable snow of the year.

Brooks Estate in West Medford, near the Winchester line

Brooks Pond

Victory Park off Winthrop Street, near Temple Shalom

Evangelical Haitian Church of Somerville (in West Medford), a massive structure that once housed a Congregational church

The sun sets on 2022

We’ve had quite the sunsets this week. I just got back from a hike in the Middlesex Fells and took this at the South Reservoir.

Happy Thanksgiving!

May your day be spent with family, friends and appreciation for all the good things in our lives.

North Reservoir, Middlesex Fells

Bird is the word

At the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary in Topsfield earlier today.

Drumlin Farm

We visited Drumlin Farm in Lincoln for the first time earlier today. The weather was warm and clear — so clear that we could easily see Mount Monadnock from the top of the drumlin from which the farm takes its name.

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