CAPE COD CANAL TRAILS:
BUZZARDS BAY & SAGAMORE, MASSACHUSETTS
-BIKE IT OR HIKE IT-
Last Updated: July 8, 2010
Length: Northern Cape Cod Canal Trail; 7 miles
Southern Cape Cod Canal Trail; 6.5 miles
Difficulty: Easy. Flat, paved trail.
Northern side of the canal: To start from the west; From Route 25, take exit 1 to the rotary and follow the signs for Main St and Buzzards Bay. The parking lot is located about a mile down Main St on your left next to the Railroad Lift Bridge. To start from the east; From Route 3, take Canal Rd off of the rotary, just before the Sagamore Bridge, for a 1/4 mile to the Sagamore Recreation Area parking lot. Route 6 runs between these two rotaries and may be used to reach either parking lot.
Southern side of the canal: To start from the west; From Route 28 or after crossing the Bourne Bridge enter the rotary and exit onto Trowbridge Rd to Shore Rd. Turn right onto Bell Rd and follow to the Tidal Flats Recreation Area parking lot. Note; To access the trail you'll need to head back out the entrance, cross the RR tracks and turn left along a dirt trail. You'll cross a second set of RR tracks before coming to the paved trail after 0.2 miles. To start from the east; From Route 6 exit to Route 6A and travel east. Turn left on Tupper Rd then left on Freezer Rd and follow to the Sandwich Recreation Area parking lot.
The Cape Cod Canal was constructed between 1909 and 1914 to save ships from traveling the 135 miles around Cape Cod. The channel is managed by the Army Corps of Engineers, who also enlarged the canal during the 1930's. The two trails were originally constructed as service roads along both sides of the canal, but opened to the public in the mid-70's. They are completely free of road crossings, flat and travel alongside the canal, but can also be tough going when your riding into the ocean winds. The Sagamore and Bourne Bridges, which were constructed between 1933 and 1935 and are identical in design both cross over the canal. A Railroad Lift Bridge also crosses the canal. For more information visit; CAPE COD CANAL TRAIL , CAPE COD CANAL TRAIL , CAPE COD CANAL TRAIL .
Note; Plans are underway to connect this trail to the Shining Sea Bikeway south in Falmouth, as the Bourne Rail Trail.
Starting from the Railroad Lift Bridge parking lot in Buzzards Bay; You can visit the information center located in the old train station, as well as obtain maps and use the restrooms. Follow the trail out of the parking lot, past the gazebo to the trailhead, next to a restroom facility. You pass by a picnic pavilion and map sign board. The trail mileage is marked on the pavement every 1/2 mile, with white slashes indicating every 1/4 mile. The trail follows a flat, open course beside the canal for 1.3 miles, where it then passes beneath the Bourne Bridge. The terrain starts to get steeper as the land rises high above the water. The trail then passes by the Hearing Run Recreation Area at the halfway mark, 3.5 miles. Here you can observe the fish ladder that allows Alewife Herring to swim up a small stream each spring to spawn at inland ponds. Parking, restrooms and picnic tables are available here. Another mile takes you beneath the Sagamore Bridge and to the Sagamore Recreation Area. At 6 1/4 miles, you pass by a fishing pier and snack bar. There is also a parking lot here, but it charges a fee. A hiking trail leads from here up to Sagamore Hill. The final 3/4 miles takes you to Scusset Beach State Reservation at the mouth of the Cape Cod Bay. A parking lot is located here as well, but there is a parking fee.
Starting from Sandwich Recreation Area; Restrooms and picnic tables are located here. The paved trail travels west above the canal. Half mile markers are painted on the trail as well as 1/4 mile dashes. You travel past the large power plant and oil tanks and after 1.4 miles you'll come alongside the RR tracks which parallel the trail for most of the way. You travel underneath the Sagamore Bridge at 2 miles. Pass by a Porto-Potty at 3.9 miles. You travel underneath the Bourne Bridge at 5.2 miles. Parking lot located here. You pass by the Aptucxet Trading Post Museum at 6.1 miles. Picnic tables located here. The trail ends at 6.5 miles near the Lift Bridge. A parking lot is located across the tracks, but you'll have to carry your bikes over them. However, a dirt path to your left will take you out to a track crossing and Bell Rd. Turn right on Bell Rd and cross another set of tracks and you'll come to the Tidal Flats Recreation Area after a 1/4 mile. Left contains more parking, restrooms and picnic tables.
CLICK HERE FOR MAP
CLICK HERE FOR MAP
BEFORE YOU SET OUT BE SURE TO READ THE
WAIVER OF RESPONSIBILITY AND DISCLAIMER
BIKE IT OR HIKE IT