Frances Hill, Westford

Frances Hill Conservation Area, by Dany Pelletier

Town/City

Westford and Chelmsford

Size

8.2 Acres

Trail Map

PDF icon Frances Hill Trail Map Brochure

SVT’s Frances Hill Reservation is a good representation of the forests and wetlands of eastern Massachusetts, and it provides territory for resident wildlife and migrating birds.

The 8-acre reservation is a gradually sloping woodland located on the north side of Frances Hill. Owned by SVT since 2009, the reservation is part of a larger conservation area that includes land owned by the Westford Conservation Trust.

  • Starting up the hill from the trail head on Lowell Road, you will quickly leave wetland vegetation behind.
  • Red maple swamp gives way to black and red oak on the lower slope. Higher up, the canopy becomes dominated by white pine and oaks, but has a varied understory.
  • In the springtime, you may spot a vernal pool in a clearing midway up the hill.
  • Also in the spring, look for round-leaf pyrola, false Solomon’s seal, Canada mayflower, and polygala.
  • Frances Hill Brook flows north, down from the high ground of Frances Hill, to join Stony Brook.
  • Bird populations here often include nesting red-tailed hawks and generations of red-bellied woodpeckers that have used an old ash tree for a nest.
  • Other wildlife signs and sightings include red and gray fox, raccoon, fisher, opossum, skunk, white-tailed deer, and coyote.

Directions

With mapping software, search for this address: 117 Lowell Road, Westford, MA

From Route I-495, take Exit 32. Follow Boston Post Road north toward Westford for approximately 1.0 mile. At Westford Town Common, turn right onto Lincoln Street. Go 500 feet. Bear right onto Main Street. Go 0.2 mile. Bear left onto Depot Street. Go 0.9 mile. Bear right onto Lowell Road. Go 1.9 miles. Parking and trail access are on the right.

Click here to visit Google Maps for specific directions from your home.