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Massachusetts State Parks

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Cape Cod Region
Shawme-Crowell State Forest
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Rte. 130
Sandwich, Massachusetts   02563

Phone: 508-888-0351
Reservations: 508-888-0351
The Shawme-Crowell State Forest, located in Sandwich, Massachusetts, is a peaceful and picturesque nature retreat. This enchanting forest offers a diverse landscape that seamlessly combines serene woodlands, meandering streams, and tranquil lakes, creating a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. Visitors can explore the numerous well-marked trails that wind through the forest, revealing stunning vistas, vibrant wildflowers, and an abundance of wildlife. The forest also features a charming pond for fishing and non-motorized boating, as well as picnic areas and camping sites for those seeking a longer stay. With its natural beauty and serene atmosphere, Shawme-Crowell State Forest offers the perfect escape into nature for both locals and tourists alike.
Nature of the Area
The Shawme-Crowell State Forest is a serene and captivating natural retreat that seamlessly blends the beauty of dense woodlands with the tranquility of a freshwater pond. Spanning over 700 acres, this enchanting forest showcases an exquisite array of flora and fauna, making it a haven for nature enthusiasts and outdoor lovers. Visitors can relish in the captivating trails that wind through towering pine and oak trees, providing a sense of exploration and adventure. The highlight of this forest is the crystal-clear pond, perfect for swimming, kayaking, or peaceful picnics by the water's edge. With its scenic beauty and diverse ecosystem, the Shawme-Crowell State Forest offers a delightful escape from the bustling city life, allowing visitors to immerse themselves in the serenity of nature.
History of the Area
Shawme-Crowell State Forest, located in Sandwich, Massachusetts, has a rich history that dates back to the early colonial period. The forest primarily covers an area that was once part of the early town of Sandwich and played a significant role in the local community's history. Here is a brief overview of the history of Shawme-Crowell State Forest:

1. Native American Presence: The area around Shawme-Crowell State Forest was originally inhabited by the Wampanoag Native American tribe. Prior to European settlement, they utilized the forests as hunting grounds and for gathering natural resources.

2. Colonial Settlement: The English colonists arrived in the 17th century and established the town of Sandwich in 1639, making it one of the oldest towns in Massachusetts. The forest area was used by the colonists for timber harvesting, farming, and other essential resources.

3. Shawme Mills: In the mid-17th century, a man named Isaac Wing established a sawmill in the forest on the Shawme River, thereby initiating the tradition of milling in the area. Over time, more mills were built along the river, making it a crucial economic hub for the town.

4. Utilization as a Reservoir: In the early 20th century, there was a plan to dam the Shawme Pond within the forest to provide a reservoir for the town of Sandwich. However, this initiative was met with resistance from the locals, who wanted to protect the unique ecological diversity of the area.

5. Crowell Forest Acquisition: In the 1930s, the Crowell family, who owned a large portion of the area, decided to preserve the forest as open space. They sold the land for a reasonable price to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and it was designated as a state forest.

6. Shawme-Crowell State Forest: The forest was officially established as Shawme-Crowell State Forest in 1940, with an initial area of about 700 acres. Over time, additional acquisitions expanded its size, and it now covers around 800 acres.

Today, Shawme-Crowell State Forest serves as a popular recreational area. It offers various amenities such as hiking trails, picnic areas, a campground, and opportunities for fishing and bird watching. The forest provides a peaceful retreat for visitors and continues to showcase the natural beauty and historical significance of the area.
Day-UseHiking Trailyes
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a unique and beautiful bed breakfast inn voted One of New England's Best by Fodor's Listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Ideally located on mid Cape Cod in the historic Bass River Village of South Yarmouth Only 90 Minutes From Boston Or Providence
18 miles from park*
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Shawme-Crowell State Forest is located near Buzzards Bay, Carver and Centerville

1. The Shawme-Crowell Loop: This is a 2-mile loop trail that offers scenic views and is good for all skill levels.

2. Sand Hill Trail: A moderate, 3 miles long hiking path with beautiful wildflowers during the spring season.

3. Pitch Pine Pathway: An easy level pathway of about one mile through dense pine forests ideal for bird watching activities.

4. Red Dot Trail: It's an intermediate-level hike covering around two miles featuring diverse flora and fauna along its course.

5. Blueberry Pond Circuit Hike: Approximately three-miles-long circular route surrounding the serene blueberry pond offering picturesque landscapes throughout the journey.

6. The Great Island Track: A challenging six:mile track providing panoramic oceanic vistas from various points on this coastal trekking route in Massachusetts' Cape Cod region within Shawme-Crowell State Forest area.

7. Yellow Triangle Route: Moderate difficulty level, approximately four miles long passing by several picnic spots perfect for family outings or group hikes.

8. Green Circle Trek: Easy to navigate five-kilometer walk suitable even for beginners; it meanders across different terrains including marshlands, woodlands as well as sandy beaches near camping grounds inside forest premises.

9. The White Square Walk: Shortest among other trails at just half:a-mile length but quite steep making it slightly difficult despite being short distance-wise.

10. Cranberry Bog Nature Walk: One:and-half mile nature walk showcasing unique cranberries cultivation areas besides typical woodland scenery.

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- If you are coming from the north, take Route 3 South to Exit 2 onto MA-3A South towards Sagamore.
- Continue on MA-3A South for about 2.5 miles until you reach the intersection with Route 149.
- Turn right onto Route 149 and drive for approximately 2 miles.
- Take a left onto Tupper Road and follow it for about half a mile.
- The entrance to Shawme-Crowell State Forest will be on your right.

If you are coming from the south, take Route 6 to Exit 2 onto MA-130 North towards Sandwich.
- Continue on MA-130 North for about 2 miles until you reach the intersection with Route 6A.
- Turn left onto Route 6A West and drive for approximately 2 miles.
- Take a right onto Cotuit Road and continue for about 2 miles.
- Turn left onto Tupper Road and drive for another mile.
- The entrance to Shawme-Crowell State Forest will be on your left.

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Massachusetts State Parks