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Impact

Together with our 2800 members and 200 volunteers, we...

  • Conserve and care for over 4300 acres of fields, forests, and farms in the 36 communities surrounding the Assabet, Sudbury, and Concord Rivers.
  • Maintain more than 55 miles of hiking trails.
  • Help friends and neighbors connect with nature through our events, programs, and outings.
  • Assist local organizations in their efforts to protect the region’s most important natural areas.

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Land Protection

Upcoming Programs

April 20, 2017 6:45pm to 8:30pm
Greenways Conservation Area, Wayland

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Take a Hike

Cowassock Woods, by Joyce Dwyer
Cowassock Woods, by Joyce Dwyer

Cowassock Woods and Ashland Town Forest are composed of a mosaic of mixed hardwood forest types, wetlands, vernal pools and stream corridors. Sixty to eighty year old mixed hardwood forests – mixed oak and oak/hickory forest types - are the dominant natural communities.

These communities differ in structure and species composition depending on the dryness of the sites. Rocky outcrops on the property create the driest sites with more black birch and smaller oaks. There are patches of naturally occurring coniferous species including white pine and eastern hemlock. There is also a large area of planted 70-foot white pine and a smaller area of planted red spruce and red pine in the center of Cowassock Woods. There is a large red maple swamp on the northern section of the Ashland Town Forest and several smaller wetlands on the town property. Cowassock Brook begins at the maple swamp and runs southeast though the SVT portion of the property. This creates a rich corridor of red maple, highbush blueberry, skunk cabbage and a large diversity of sedges and wildflowers. In many areas, even the upland forest contains some wetland indicator species; there is most likely a ledge or high water table creating relatively moist upland soil.

PDF icon Cowassock Woods Brochure and Map

Nature Sightings

A red-tailed hawk in Framingham, photographed by Steve Forman.
A red-tailed hawk in Framingham, photographed by Steve Forman.

March 21, 2017

Steve Forman photographed a red-tailed hawk in Framingham.

A flock of red-winged blackbirds and a mourning dove in Harvard, photographed by Robin Right.
A flock of red-winged blackbirds and a mourning dove in Harvard, photographed by Robin Right.

March 19, 2017

Robin Right photographed a flock of red-winged blackbirds, along with a mourning dove, near her Harvard home.

A gray squirrel in Stow.
A gray squirrel in Stow.

March 16, 2017

Steve from Stow photographed a gray squirrel and a red-tailed hawk near his home.

The Moon over Stow.
The Moon over Stow.

March 15, 2017

Steve from Stow photographed American robins, a northern cardinal, a dark-eyed junco, and the Moon from his back yard.

American wigeons (center) and ring-necked ducks on Hager Pond in Marlborough, photographed by Sue Feldberg.
American wigeons (center) and ring-necked ducks on Hager Pond in Marlborough, photographed by Sue Feldberg.

March 15, 2017

Sue Feldberg photographed American wigeons, ring-necked ducks, and wood ducks at Hager Pond in Marlborough.