60 Murphy Memorial Dr, Quincy, MA 02169, USA
Owned By: City of Quincy
Passanageset Park is a 58-acre property in Quincy. It features 1.3 miles of grassy trails with beautiful views of the Town River and Broad Meadow Marsh. Popular among birders, it is located in the Adams Shore neighborhood, near Hough’s Neck. Stroller-friendly.
The following information is gleaned from the property’s website. Several times in the past century, the tidal salt marsh at this property was significantly disturbed by gravel excavation and the dumping of Town River dredging spoils.
From 2010 to 2013 the City of Quincy and the Army Corps of Engineers conducted the Broad Meadows Marsh Restoration Project, with contributions from the Neponset River Watershed Association. The salt marsh and adjacent salt pond habitats were restored, and trails were created for passive recreation. 393,000 cubic yards of dredged material was excavated, transported, and redistributed. 31 acres of salt marsh, 4 acres of wet meadow grasses, and 23 acres of coastal grasslands were restored.
Passanageset is the Native American name given by the Neponset band of the Massachusett tribe to this section of today’s Quincy. Numerous artifacts dating back 3500 years were excavated nearby, in 1999, during the construction of Caddy Memorial Park.
Signage on site recognizes the First People who settled the area; their descendants, the Massachusett; and the wealth of natural resources Passanageset has provided for thousands of years. This spot was a seasonal home to the Massachusett People and also the seat of Chickataubut, Principal Sac’hem of the Massachusetts when the English settlers arrived. Additional information is available on the property’s website.
This land is within the region of the Neponset band of the Massachusett (or Massachuseuk). To learn more about local Native American tribes, we encourage you to interact with their members. The Massachusett tribe at Ponkapoag shares information on its website.
This property features 1.3 miles of wide gravel loop trails.
Habitats and Wildlife
The property consists of mostly flat trails through upland meadows and along the edge of the salt marsh and the Town River, overlooking Town River Bay. In addition to the grasses, there are a few scattered birch and sumac trees. Since the property was restored, the amount and diversity of salt marsh flora has grown.
Signage on site explains that “salt marshes are among the most productive ecosystems on earth, and they as valuable today as they were to the people who lived here thousands of years ago. They provide essential food, refuge, or nursery habitat for more than 75% of the fisheries we depend on. Numerous birds, mammals, and invertebrate species also depend on this unique habitat, which helps buffer stormy seas, slow shoreline erosion, and absorb excess nutrient before they reach our oceans.”
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology considers Passanageset a Birding Hotspot. Watch for herons, egrets, terns, sandpipers, and osprey feeding on the creatures that inhabit the salt marsh. You might also see mice, mink, raccoon, skunk, and weasel.
The Town River flows into the Fore River a short distance downstream of the Quincy-Weymouth line.
The Fore River serves as the boundary line between the towns of Weymouth and Braintree. It flows for about 3 miles, into Quincy, where it meets Town River, and then flows for another 2 miles into Hingham Bay. In its final few miles, the Fore River is nearly a mile wide in some places. Follow the Fore River Watershed Association more information about the Monatiquot and Fore Rivers.
Historic Site: No
Boat Launch: No
Size: 58 acres
Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Parking: Two pedestrian entrances. Park at Broad Meadows Middle School (during non-school hours) or at Quincy Youth Arena.
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Dirt biking is prohibited.
Dogs: Dogs must remain on leash. Scoop the poop!
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: Yes
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: Town River (Fore River watershed)