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Follow a trail from the farmstead through restored woodlands to hillside hayfields and pastures, where you’ll enjoy views of Great Blue Hill and the Boston skyline.
What makes Moose Hill Farm a special place?
Visitors can both enjoy the varied, expansive grounds of this former “gentleman’s farm,” and educate themselves about its agricultural history by exploring cellar holes and tracing stone walls built by centuries of farm labor. Traverse open fields cleared by ox and plow, later “mown” by herds of sheep, and, well into the 20th century, trod by dairy cows.
Between Boston and Providence, only Great Blue Hill, at 635 feet, is taller than 466-foot Moose Hill. The hill's impressive elevation, and the fact that it is located near what once was considered the informal “border” between the Massachusetts and Wampanoag Indian tribes, may have meant it played a strategic role in the cultural and political interplay of indigenous people.
Its height also guarantees terrific views of the Boston skyline and the Neponset River Valley from the upper hayfield.
Trails lead to summit fields, where grassland birds are again finding a home. The reservation's wooded hillsides still shelter some mature specimens of the American chestnut tree, a species that used to dominate forests in the eastern United States until it was it was nearly exterminated by a bark fungus. Look for the trees' familiar, spiny-husked nuts, which traditionally nourished wild turkey and white-tailed deer, both of which you will still see in large numbers at the farm today.
The opportunities for outdoor recreation here maintain a community tradition dating back 150 years. Even as the town’s agriculture was waning in response to Americans moving west, civic fathers seized upon the public's emerging desire for leisure and healthful pursuits by opening a hotel and other tourist attractions on nearby Lake Massapoag. The elevation, crisp breezes and clean waters of the local environment were considered beneficial, even restorative; a sanatorium for lung disease patients was built, and soon Sharon was a destination for pastoral pursuits.
3.5 miles of trails through meadow and woodlands.
There is another reason Moose Hill Farm is a special place! The farm is the campus for a year-round, nature-based preschool. The Cooperative Nature School at the Trustees Moose Hill Farm is a child-driven, outdoor-oriented learning environment that cultivates exploration, compassion, and community. The school is housed in the main farmhouse, and students explore the surrounding 347 acres of woodlands, wetlands, meadows, and pastures daily!