Oak Trail

Beaver Pond on Joe English Brook in winter.
Beaver Pond on Joe English Brook in winter.
Map:  Oak Trail Map (NRPC Map detail)
Length: 0.3 mile Post 21 to Post 22 on the Bacon Trail
Identification: Blue Blazes
Difficulty: Walking: Easy
                  XC skiing: Moderate, water crossing.
                  Mountain biking:  Not allowed.

The Oak Trail heads northeast from the Bacon Trail at Post 21, rising through formerly cleared land. It is not maintained for XC skiing. Old stone walls mark the edges of former fields. Trunks of old white oaks that must have given shade to cows or sheep 150 years ago now house squirrels and other cavity nesters. This area has little understory due to its dryness and the shallow soils on the hillside.

Log:  Begin at Post 21 on the Bacon Trail just beyond the Ledge Trail junction. Pass through an old barway. Follow the old wall uphill with a large white oak ahead. Hollows in the tree and between the rocks of the wall provide shelter for many small animals. Old trees (snags) are left in the forest as providers of shelter and food such as grubs and insects.  The trail passes boulders perched above Clean Brook. Porcupine signs may be seen in this area. Descend through walls to rejoin the Bacon Trail in .3 mile at post 22.