Plymouth River Complex, 156 Ward St, Hingham, MA 02043, USA
781-741-1400 (Hingham Town Offices)
Owned By: Town of Hingham
A large multi-use property with a mile of woodland trails, including a Storybook Walk. Also on site: soccer/lacrosse fields, tennis courts, and a small pond. On Ward Street, look for the sign for Margetts Field.
This property used to be known as the Schirmer Farm. It is all town-owned, but jurisdiction is divided among the School, Selectmen, Recreation and Conservation departments. Along the trails, you’ll see at least one old stone wall.
In earlier times, this land was within the region of the Wampanoag and Massachuseuk (or Massachusett) Native American tribes.
Spring turkey and fall deer bow hunting are allowed, by Special Permit only, through the Hingham Conservation Commission.
The trails are located in the northern part of the property. Park in the lot on Ward Street and look for the lacrosse field, at the end of the second parking area (toward the back). If you walk counter-clockwise around the lacrosse field, you’ll soon see the trailhead and a metal sign with hunting rules. Just down the trail is a boardwalk over some wetlands.
This is the start of a loop trail that extends through a pine forest and eventually around to the rear of the lacrosse fields. The trail is generally clear, although there are a few areas with some roots. It’s mostly easy walking, although there are a few spots with some elevation. At one point the trail widens into a cart path, but for the most part it’s more narrow. It’s a loop of about 0.6 miles, but there are some short-cuts within it.
The trail comes close to the Camelot Drive neighborhood, where there is a pedestrian access point. About 2/3 of the way around the loop you’ll find a Storybook Walk (featuring pages from a story book) and an additional access point (with parking), behind the Plymouth River Elementary School.
Habitats and Wildlife
The streams and wetlands on this property flow into the Plymouth River. You can’t see the river from the existing trails, but it provides portions of the southern boundary of the property and is known as a prime spot for trout fishing. A narrow segment of the property extends along the Plymouth River to Cushing Pond.
The Plymouth River is a major tributary to Crooked Meadow River, which joins with Fulling Mill Brook to create the Weir River. The Weir River flows north through Hingham, with Tower Brook and Accord Brook joining it in its first mile. It gradually turns northeast and flows for another 1.4 miles to Foundry Pond. The Weir River Estuary, designated by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as an Area of Critical Concern, begins just below the manmade dam at the pond. The mile-wide estuary forms the border between Hingham and Hull, and empties into Hingham Bay.
The diverse terrain here — including a small pond and an abandoned agricultural field, supports a variety of plant and animal communities. The woodland along the trail is mostly pine, but beech and other hardwood trees are present as well. You’ll also find some rocky outcroppings and some glacial erratic boulders. The southern section borders the upper reaches of Cushing Pond.
Some of the wildlife spotted here include: beavers, wood ducks, American black ducks, great blue heron, ring necked pheasants, and woodcock.
Historic Site: No
Boat Launch: No
Size: 93 acres
Hours: Dawn To Dusk
Parking: Large parking area on Ward Street. Additional parking at the Plymouth River Elementary School.
Trail Difficulty: Easy, Medium
Along the trail, there is a Storybook Walk, and a bench. On the larger property (off Ward Street), there is a bicycle rack, as well as athletic fields for soccer and lacrosse.
Dogs: Dogs must remain on leash. Scoop the poop!
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: No
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: Plymouth River /Weir River watershed