Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge


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Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge (309.6 acres)
 
 
Access: From parking lots at Foss Farm and Greenough Land.
Restrictions: Horses, dogs, and bicycles are prohibited.
 
Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge links Foss Farm to the Greenough Land, thus creating a large conservation parcel. When Carlisle bought this property in 1998 and resold it to the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife as part of the Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, the town retained use of several through-trails as part of the settlement. While there is no parking at the Wildlife Refuge, or entry off Maple Street, through hikers can access the trails from both ends.
 
The River Trail from Foss Farm parallels the Concord River through Great Meadows to Greenough. This is wet in spring but a 200' boardwalk and 130' bridge constructed in the fall of 2004 improves access to the parcel during the wet season. The best access and river views are afforded in the fall and in the winter during cross-country ski season. An inland trail passes through a pine forest and crosses several large boardwalks before entering Carlisle's largest expanse of publicly accessible fields where soaring red tailed hawks and other raptors are often sighted. Leaving Great Meadows Refuge, stay on the marked trails and away from all National Wildlife Refuge buildings and structures.