Try a Trail at Bowman Conservation Area
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[Try A Trail Close To Home]
[View through trees of Sandra Pond]

My Favorite Trail

By Kelly Reilly

My favorite trail is one of the classic trails of Westborough: a mile-long loop trail that runs through the forest to Sandra Pond.  To me, this trail feels like a journey, passing through changing landscapes and new stands of trees that constantly awe me with their peaceful beauty. 

[Views near beginning of trail]
The trail begins at the Bowman Street parking lot and splits immediately to the right, crossing a small bridge into a dark stand of pines.  This bridge has withstood the test of time, since I first walked along the Sandra Pond trails as a little girl. 
Cross another bridge and small field, and then begins the portion of the trail that leads through thicker forest, down miniature coulees and up, by deciduous leafy trees that fade into the awe-inspiring quiet of conifer stands and back again.  This especially narrow portion of the trail runs parallel to Piccadilly Brook at the base of the slope that leads steadily to the sparkling reservoir.
[Views along trail]
At the edge of Sandra Pond the trail turns sharply and leads steeply up to meet the main Charm Bracelet trail.  From atop this plateau in the forest you can finally glimpse the entirety of the reservoir through the trees, often full of blowing waves, geese, or glittering ice depending on the time of year.
At this point the trail leads back along the hill and into the big, leafy deciduous tree stand.  The last empty field and gravel road that directs out of the idyllic bubble of the forest gently reminds me of exactly how special it is to have such a precious resource so close at hand. 
Through the changes over the years or between the seasons, this trail at Sandra Pond has always been, and forever will remain, my favorite place.

Kelly Reilly has been walking the trails around Sandra Pond since she moved to Westborough in 1996.  She recently graduated from Colorado College with a degree in environmental policy.
A Favorite Trail at Bowman Conservation Area
The Bowman Conservation Area (also known as the Westborough Conservation Area) surrounding Sandra Pond was Westborough’s first conservation area, created in 1969 to protect the land around the town’s drinking water reservoir.  The trail highlighted here could easily be everyone’s favorite trail, although other trails in town might be contenders for that title. Spring is an ideal time to discover this trail or re-acquaint yourself with it.  Enjoy it through all four seasons!
[Map of Bowman Conservation Area, with trail highlighted]
Trail information
Location: Bowman Conservation Area, accessed from parking lot on Bowman Street
Length:  about 1 mile (loop)
Terrain:  mostly flat but with at least one steep hill; a section of trail along Piccadilly Brook is very narrow with drop-off on one side.
Trail map:   Bowman Conservation Area Trail Map
A description of this trail walk from the trail map brochure: A popular walk is to follow Piccadilly Brook as it flows into the cove in Sandra Pond. At 0.3 miles you will pass the trail crossing over the cove leading to Upton Road. In another 0.2 miles you reach the main body of Sandra Pond. From there climb the hill to reach the Charm Bracelet in another 0.3 miles. Turning left at this point will return you to the parking lot in 0.2 miles for a total walk of a mile.
Noteworthy:  Around Memorial Day in May, the section of trail along Piccadilly Brook is a wonderful place to see pink lady’s-slippers in bloom on the hillside. 
For information and photos of wildflowers found at the Bowman Conservation Area (and other places in Westborough) over the years, check out “Wildflowers of the Westborough Reservoir”:
To view a Westborough TV video of Bowman Discovery Day (September 2015) click here.
WCLT members and friends:  Tell us about your own favorite trail in town!  Email us about it (300 words or less) at so we can add some trail information and share it with others.  Photos welcome!
Copyright © 2016, Westborough Community Land Trust, All rights reserved.
Our mailing address is:
PO Box 383, Westborough, MA 01581

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Westborough Community Land Trust · PO Box 383 · Westborough, Ma 01581 · USA

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