Crosbie Family Preserve


Owned By: Town of Scituate

Several intersecting loop trails through woodlands and wetlands. Numerous stone walls.


This property includes the Crosbie Preserve (39.14 acres, acquired in 2014) and Appleton Field (10 acres, acquired in 2003 ). Look for rock piles on the west side of Appleton Field, set aside after the field was cleared for agriculture. Also to the west of the field, in the woods, there is an abandoned car.

Trail Description

The orange trail, which extends along the perimeter of the property, features a large loop connecting the upland areas and South Swamp. Shorter trails marked in yellow, green and white, interconnect in the interior of this loop. Old cart roads are still in place from the time when the upland area was used for tree harvesting. Appleton Field is a large open area that in recent years has been leased by the town to local farmers.

Habitats and Wildlife

The Crosbie property is located on a glacial drumlin (mound) with Appleton Field roughly at its center. The orange trail features mixed pine and hardwood forests, plus wetlands. In the outlying swamp areas, look for moss-covered rocks and boulders. Trees present here include black oak, holly, white pine, red maple, and American beech, plus an occasional hemlock, tupelo, and Atlantic White Cedar. Don’t miss the unusual and somewhat rare Atlantic White Cedar at the edge of the swamp along the Orange Trail (noted by a white trail marker).

South Swamp forms the headwaters of three sub-watersheds. To the northwest is Aaron Brook, that flows into Bound Brook. An unnamed tributary to Bound Brook itself emanates from the northeast corner of South Swamp and flows through the Higgins-MacAllister Preserve parallel to Booth Hill Road. First Herring Brook flows south out of South Swamp, crosses First Parish Road, and through the former Damon Pond; then through Tack Factory Pond to form Herring River in the North River Estuary.

42.200891, -70.802088

Historic Site: No

Park: No

Beach: No

Boat Launch: No

Lifeguards: No

Size: 50 acres

Hours: Dawn to Dusk

Parking: The Crosbie Preserve access-road entrance is located just east of 253 Clapp Road; this leads to a multicar parking area directly adjacent to Appleton Field.

Cost: Free

Trail Difficulty: Easy, Medium

Dogs: Yes

Boat Ramp: No

ADA Access: No

Scenic Views: Yes

Other Things to Do at This Site