Hiking

Alton J. Smith Reserve

Camp Kiwanee Rd, Hanson, MA 02341, USA

(781) 294-4119

Owned By: Town of Hanson

A retired cranberry bog surrounded by walking trails and wetlands. Formerly known as Smitty’s Bog. Car-top boat access to Indian Head Pond. Stroller-friendly.

Features

This retired cranberry bog sits between Maquan Pond and Indian Head Pond. Just up the road is Camp Kiwanee, a former scout camp now owned by the Town of Hanson.

Through its Wetlands Reserve Program, the Natural Resource Conservation Service is currently providing funding for a 5-year restoration program, to convert the streams and bog back to their natural state, a forested wetland environment.

Trail Description

A network of wide, flat dirt roads surrounds this former cranberry bog. For easy access, look for the stone gatehouse on Camp Kiwanee Road, which marks one major trailhead. There are also some spur trails into the woods that connect to Camp Kiwanee and the J. J. Shepherd Town Forest/Pembroke Town Forest. Some trails here are part of the larger Bay Circuit Trail, and are marked. The Bay Circuit Trail is 200 miles of linked green space from Plum Island in Newburyport to Bay Farm in Duxbury. This particular section is known as the Mattakeeseett Path.

Additional access from Indian Head Pond, at the Marcus L. Urann Fisherman’s Landing, off Route 58 (Indian Head Street). Use this entrance for car-top boat access to Indian Head Pond.

Habitats and Wildlife

The headwaters of Indian Head Brook are located on this property. Indian Head Brook flows north from Indian Head Pond, through Wampatuck Pond and Little Cedar Swamp, into the Indian Head/Drinkwater River, which then flows into the North River and out to sea.

The woods surrounding the cranberry bog are primarily pine, with some birch and oak. Maple trees have begun to take over some of the bog areas.

This is an excellent spot for birding. Watch for Great Blue Heron in the wetlands.

Camp Kiwanee Rd, Hanson, MA 02341, USA

Historic Site: No

Park: No

Beach: No

Boat Launch: Yes

Lifeguards: No

Size: 103 acres

Hours: Dawn to Dusk

Parking: Limited on-site parking at Cranberry Cove on Camp Kiwanee Road. Additional parking at Indian Head Pond (unmarked).

Cost: Free

Trail Difficulty: Easy

Facilities:

Informational kiosk at Indian Head Pond.

Dogs: Yes

Boat Ramp: No

ADA Access: No

Scenic Views: Yes