Hanson Town Forest, Hanson, MA 02341, USA
Owned By: Town of Hanson
A quiet area of woods and wetlands on the shore of Wampatuck Pond.
Hanson’s first conservation area (1938), this property was previously known as “Poor Farm.” It is managed by the Town Forest Committee. Overcrowded trees are harvested selectively to improve the longterm health of the forest.
Prior to European contact, the Mattakeeset band of the Massachuseuk (or Massachusett) Native American tribe lived for thousands of years in the North River watershed. Their village included most of today’s Pembroke and Hanson as well as parts of Duxbury. The word “Mattakeeset” means “place of many fish.” Wampatuck Pond is named for the Chief Sachem of the Mattakeeset, Josias Wompatuck (also spelled Wampatuck).
The approximately 1-mile trail network is unmarked, but relatively easy to follow. Some paths are wide, others are narrow, but all are well-trodden with few obstacles. A portion of the Bay Circuit Trail, blazed in white, runs through the property. There is a trailhead on Route 58, across the street from the Indian Head School. Look for the informational kiosk. (Park at the sports complex, immediately adjacent to the trailhead.) Trail access is also available at the end of the residential street known as Indian Trail.
Habitats and Wildlife
The forest is located directly on Wampatuck Pond. The 62-acre pond is manmade, and Indian Head Brook, a tributary to the Indian Head River, flows through it. In the woods, you will find pine and oak, as well as maple, beech and holly trees, and also and a remarkably large yellow birch! Other plant life includes ferns and mayflowers.
Historic Site: No
Boat Launch: No
Size: 37 acres
Hours: Dawn to Dusk
Parking: Park at the sports complex on Route 58, or at the cue de sac at the end of Indian Trail.
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Pond overlook with two benches. Two rough campsites for use by scout groups.
Boat Ramp: No
ADA Access: No
Scenic Views: Yes
Waterbody/Watershed: Wampatuck Pond (North & South Rivers watershed)