ERVING STATE FOREST
This forest provides a wide variety of recreational pursuits including, boating, swimming and fishing at Laurel Lake with its beautiful, brick-lined lakeshore, camping, picnicking, hunting, horseback riding and winter sports. The woodlands are interlaced by 8 miles of forest roads, and numerous trails lead to points of scenic interest.
Erving State Forest, located in Erving, Massachusetts, has a rich history that dates back centuries. Here is a brief overview of its historical significance:
1. Indigenous People: Prior to European settlement, the land where Erving State Forest now stands was inhabited by the indigenous Nipmuc and Pocumtuck tribes. They relied on the forest for hunting, fishing, and gathering.
2. European Settlement: The area was officially settled by Europeans in the 18th century. The town of Erving (originally known as Ervingshire) was incorporated in 1838. It quickly became an industrial center due to its location along the Miller's River, fueling the growth of mills and factories.
3. Deforestation and Reclamation: The forests in the area were heavily exploited for timber during the 19th century. However, by the early 20th century, logging activities had significantly diminished the forest cover. Recognizing the importance of forest conservation, the state government intervened to reclaim the land through reforestation efforts.
4. Creation of State Forest: Erving State Forest was established in 1928 under the Massachusetts State Forests Commission. The purpose was to protect and manage the reclaimed forest land for public recreation and conservation. The Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), a New Deal program, played a significant role in developing the park's infrastructure during the 1930s.
5. CCC Legacy: The CCC improved the forest by constructing various trails, fire roads, campgrounds, picnic areas, and recreational facilities within Erving State Forest. Many of these sites, including the picturesque Laurel Lake, were created during this time.
6. Recreational Opportunities: Over the years, Erving State Forest has provided ample opportunities for recreation and outdoor activities. Visitors can enjoy camping, hiking, fishing, boating, swimming, and picnicking in a serene natural setting.
Erving State Forest continues to be cherished by locals and tourists alike, serving as a reminder of Massachusetts' natural and historical heritage.
Erving State Forest in Massachusetts offers a variety of camping options for outdoor enthusiasts. Here are some:
1. Laurel Lake Campground: This campground is located within the Erving State Forest and has 51 campsites available, including RV sites with no hookups.
2. French King Motel & Trailer Park: Located just outside the forest area, this place provides both motel rooms and trailer park spots for campers bringing their own trailers or RVs.
3. Mohawk Trail State Forest Cabins: Although it's not directly inside Erving state forest but nearby; these rustic cabins offer an alternative to traditional tent camping.
4. Barton Cove Campground: A few miles away from Erving state forest offering waterfront views on Connecticut River.
5. Tully Lake Campground: It's about half hour drive from Irving state forests providing tents only site along Tully lake.
6. Wendell Statte Forrest: Another option near by where you can enjoy primitive style of Camping.