Mountain Biking & MTB Trails: Ames Nowell State Park

"MTB's in the Trees". Photo by Chris Kochanski.

Ames Nowell State Park

Trail Rating:
Easy: 30%      |      Moderate: 40%     |     Difficult: 30%


Location:
739 Linwood St, Abington Massachusetts 02351
Interactive Mobile Phone Map:
https://Wompy.org/Ames

To use the map, click the drop down menu in the upper right corner of the map:

  • Click  "show my position" to see where you are in the park in real time.

  • Click "trail ratings" to view ratings  like those used on ski slopes - green, blue, & black. [Feature Coming Soon}

  • Click to "routes" to follow  pre-planned routes.


Trailforks Maps & GPS:
https://www.trailforks.com > Ames Nowell State Park

Trail Map (Open Street):
AmesNowell_Aug_2014.pdf

Description: 
 
Ames Nowell is a mountain biker’s Shangri La. Largely technical terrain with hundreds of trails, riders often get turned around and/or just don’t know where to ride. Hopefully Trailforks fixes that problem and brings more riders into the park. There are a few old ATV and doubletracks that can be accessed mostly on the perimeter but the interior is full of challenging singletrack. A good test to see if the park’s trails are for you is to ride the eastern Cleveland Pond Trail. Although this might be considered a black trail at many parks, at Ames it’s only a blue. Take the doubletrack north from the parking lot all the way to the lone bench by the Pond and then return along the edge of the Pond Trail. If you enjoy this type of riding, head into the rest of the park and challenge yourself on the blue and black trails.

The park essentially is broken down into three different rideable quadrants. East of the pond as described above having the HQ, a long double track and the blue trail along the pond.

Cross over the bridge at the pond’s dam and you will hit the SW quadrant. This area has the largest selection of connected green and blue trails, mostly along the pond’s edge. At the end of the dam, immediately to the right, is a small technical black trail that is a great introduction to the challenges this park has in hold for the riders. The SW area is split by the powerlines and the entire interior is filled with ledgey, rocky and very challenging terrain. On the far western edge is the Blue Door trail were the SEMass NEMBA chapter built a 100’ long bridge over a water crossing. This is a challenging blue trail and is not one to be missed. There are great connected loops to discover in this area.

The final rideable quadrant is the NW quadrant. The NW and SW areas are divided by a short trail that has three bridges over a swampy area. Cross these bridges going north and you are in the NW quadrant. The NW Quadrant is split by the Chestnut Street Access Road (doubletrack). To the right of the road you will find the NEMBA created classic trails; The Witch Trail and Toby’s Ridge. Both have challenging ledge throughout the trails. The Witch Trail is a loop trail best done clockwise. Toby’s Ridge terminates at the powerlines. It’s best to turn right at the powerlines, ride about 200 yards, then ascend up the rock face to the blue trail that ultimately forms a completed loop. West of the Chestnut Street Access Road (the doubletrack again) are dozens of small techy trails (only a few are shown on Trailforks). This is a area where the rider can work on their serious technical skills. It includes two historic old quarry’s that you’ll probably stumble upon. Hit the southern most blue trail in this area for a fun return to the three bridges. Although this trail is a fairly wide singletrack, there are some great alternate lines on ledges to the right of the trail.

There is a fourth quadrant in the NE corner of the park. Unfortunately, this area has been recently flooded by beavers and contains some private land. This area includes Beaver Creek (aptly named) and often floods on it’s own and is tough to cross. Until the state acquires the land and NEMBA or some other trail advocacy group re-routes the trails and builds a couple bridges, there really isn’t anything to ride in this quadrant.

If you want a quick bite or a brew after your ride, you should try The Brook Kitchen and Tap in Holbrook. Only 5 minutes from the park, they have a great selection of wings and beers on tap and have generously hosted SEMass NEMBA chapter meetings.

Access Info:

Riders generally meet at the large parking area behind the HQ at the end of Linwood Street. In winter, riders just park at the few parking spots around the HQ building. Sometimes, small groups will meet at the Chestnut Street parking area.

Disclaimer:

Ames is a day-use park. There is no water and only one port-o-potty at the HQ. There is no hunting at Ames and no ATV's although they do have a bit of an ATV problem. Because of all the ledge, unfortunately unsanctioned trails are being created all the time and trail building in the park is forbidden. With that being said, there are no trails in the park that are hiker or equestrian only.