JAY McLAREN TRAIL:
-BIKE IT OR HIKE IT-
Last Updated:August 08, 2023
Length: Jay McLaren Trail; 2 miles
Difficulty: Moderate. Flat, hard packed dirt & sand rail trail. Trail has some wash outs and ruts from ATV use.
To start from Church Street [Southern End]; From I-495 take exit 115 to Broad St and travel north. Turn left on Main St then right on Church St. Look For 61 Church St o your right and park along the half circle road. Spot the wooden trail sign next to the road by a stone wall. An access trail travels between a fence and 61 Church St. It consists of a mowed path.
The Jay McLaren Trail travels on an old rail bed along the site of a spur connecting Merrimac Square to the Boston & Maine Railroad. It runs north into Newton, NH. The trail has not been well maintained and does not offer much in terms of RR history or natural beauty. Not worth a side trip to check out. I would classify it as undeveloped. For more information See; JAY McLAREN TRAIL .
Starting from 61 Church Street [Southern End]; From the trail sign by the stone wall you'll head between the wooden fence on your left and the house (61 Church St) on your right. A grass path is maintained that turns into a dirt path which brings you to the old rail trail.
Note; The trail heading right (South) ends after only a 1/4 mile behind the Church Street Cemetery, with no access.
Heading left (North) the Jay McLaren Trail travels through the woods and consists of a hard packed dirt & sand surface. Pass by some horse barns at a 1/4 mile and spot an old RR Mile Marker on the left reading NJ4/M1 (Newton Junction 4 miles/Merrimac 1 mile). When you come to an intersection continue straight. Cross a stone culvert at 0.5 miles where the trail gets rough from ATV use. Travel along a high berm over Cobbler Brook and then cross Harriman Rd on a narrow wooden bridge at 1 mile. This next section has a lot of wash out. Cross Brush Hill Rd at 1.3 miles and you'll encounter more wash out before the trail improves. You then travel above a marsh on your left that is fed by the Back River and come to an orange gate at 1.9 miles where the trail ends. Just north of here is NH, where another section of this old rail bed has been developed as the Peanut Rail Trail .
CLICK HERE FOR MAP 1
CLICK HERE FOR MAP 2
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WAIVER OF RESPONSIBILITY AND DISCLAIMER
BIKE IT OR HIKE IT