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Fitness Trails in Boston

There are a lot of great fitness trails in Boston. Whether you're into walking, running, or cycling, I've listed 6 of the best trails in the greater Boston area, sorted by length (in miles). 

Looking to get fit in Boston? Check out this article on everything you need to know to get fit in Boston.

Length: 0-10 miles

South Spencer Rail Trail

1.62 miles in Worcester MA

Surface: Crushed Stone

Description from Traillink:

The South Spencer Rail Trail runs for less than 2 miles from downtown Spencer to an area south of town near Spencer State Forest. The path, which is also known as the Depot Trail, occupies a former spur line of the Boston and Albany Railroad originally constructed in 1879.

Near the trail's southern end at S. Spencer Road, a hiking trail leads into Spencer State Forest's Howe Pond parcel, centered on its namesake water feature. The area was once an estate belonging to Elias Howe, the inventor of the sewing machine. Within the park, trail users can connect to its extensive hiking network, including a portion of the 95-mile Midstate Trail.

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Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/south-spencer-rail-trail.aspx

Southwest Corridor Park

3.9 miles in suffolk county

Surface: Asphalt

Description from Traillink:

Southwest Corridor Park is a 4.7-mile linear park through the Boston neighborhoods of South End, Roxbury and Jamaica Plain. A recreation and commuter route popular with walkers, runners, and cyclists, the park is a triumph of its surrounding communities, which rallied in the 1960s to prevent a 12-lane highway from flanking a subway line and instead created this 52-acre green space. The park parallels the Orange Line between the Back Bay and Forest Hills T-stations. Forest Hills connects to the Needham commuter rail line, while Back Bay is a stop on the Framingham/Worcester, Providence/Stoughton and Needham commuter rail lines, as well as the Amtrak line. The trail (just under 4 miles) is called the Pierre Lallement Bike Path. (Read more on traillink)

Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/southwest-corridor-park-(pierre-lallement-bike-path).aspx

 

Length: 11-20 miles

Dr. Paul Dudley White Bike Path

13.6 miles in Suffolk county

Surface: Asphalt

Description from Traillink:

Nestled in Boston’s Charles River Reservation, the Dr. Paul Dudley White Bike Path offers a pleasant walk or ride along both sides of the river from the city’s Museum of Science to Watertown. To reach both shores, the Charles River can be crossed easily by way of several pedestrian bridges.

Also known as the Charles River Path or Charles River Greenway, the trail was named in honor of a Massachusetts native and renowned cardiologist who stressed the importance of preventive medicine such as walking and biking.

Near the eastern end of the trail, be sure to stop in North Point Park for scenic overlooks of the river. As you travel west, you’ll pass the campuses of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston University, and Harvard University, making this a popular route for students and faculty. Attractions along the way include Magazine Beach (with a swimming pool, athletic fields, and playground), Christian A. Herter Park (which features community gardens, a playground, and canoe and kayak rentals), and the Watertown Dam.

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Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/dr-paul-dudley-white-bike-path.aspx

Nashua River Rail Trail

12.3 miles in Hillsborough and Middlesex Counties

Surface: Asphalt

Description from Traillink:

The Nashua River Rail Trail is a beautiful and peaceful rural trail extending through the Massachusetts communities of Ayer, Groton, Pepperell and Dunstable. The trail continues into New Hampshire just south of the town of Nashua. In autumn it provides a spectacular platform for viewing the colorful changing leaves. Along the 7 miles between Groton Center and Dunstable, a 5-foot-wide gravel equestrian path parallels the trail.Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/nashua-river-rail-trail.aspx

 

Length: 20+ miles

Mass Central Rail Trail

31.9 miles in essex, hampshire, and worcester counties

Surface: crushed stone, dirt, grass

Description from Traillink: 

A 104 mile rail line was shattered by hurricane in 1938. Now, more than 60 years later, dedicated volunteers in 33 communities are working to reconnect it. Instead of trains there will be cross-country skiers, bicyclists, hikers, and joggers.

It won't be easy. While much of the old railway is passable to a dedicated hiker, the ownership is less clear. The railway has faded so far from memory that many maps don't even show the former route. A number of the bridges were torn down for scrap. Some of the land was sold, and neighboring landowners in other areas took advantage of the situation to build swimming pools, backyards, parking lots and other structures.

Despite the obstacles, the Mass Central Rail Trail continues to be developed between Boston and Northampton; several sections, totaling nearly 32 miles, are now complete.

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Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/mass-central-rail-trail.aspx

Air Line State Park Trail

52.6 miles in Hartford, Middlesex, New London, Tolland, and Windham Counties

Surface: Gravel

Description from Traillink:

Air Line State Park Trail winds for 53 miles from the northeast corner of Connecticut, where the state borders Massachusetts, down to East Hampton in the heart of the state. Over the state border, you can make a contiguous connection to the Southern New England Trunk Line Trail, a scenic 22-mile adventure that heads east to Franklin.

Link: http://www.traillink.com/trail/air-line-state-park-trail.aspx

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Written by Chris Harrington

Chris is the founder of The Finest Fitness. He is a 23 year old entrepreneur, athlete, and personal trainer residing in Boston, MA. He has worked with over 150 clients as a fitness coach at a local health club, trained his own clientele, and continues to learn and grow in his own training. He has been featured on Bodybuilding.com's 'Teen Transformation of the Week', and has ranked in the top 9 percentile for the Spartan Race. He currently runs private personal training in Boston, and manages clients through The Finest Fitness.


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