The Assabet River Rail Trail flanks the scenic Assabet River for 5.6 miles (with plans to expand to 12 miles in the future) through the towns of Hudson and Marlborough. This 12-foot wide, paved trail is great for bicyclists who want a forested, scenic ride, with minimal traffic crossings. The trail crosses over the river several times, at one point over an historical, wrought iron railroad bridge. Cyclists can pick up the trail in Hudson along Route 62, where a restored 1921 blue caboose marks the trailhead parking area. Other trail parking areas are: 157 Washington Street at Rite Aid Pharmacy in Hudson; 417 Main Street in Hudson; 40 Hudson Street in Marlborough.
The Minuteman Bikeway passes through the area where the American Revolution began in April 1775. Built on an inactive railroad, the trail is used by local residents as a convenient, eco-friendly way to reach train stations. The path is 12 feet wide, plowed in the winter, and includes lots of stops for refreshments and restrooms at Depot Park in Bedford, the Lexington Visitor’s Center, Alewife Station, and business districts along the bikeway. Trail access in Bedford is available at the intersection of South Road and Loomis Street (exit 31B from I-95); at Lexington Center and Arlington Center, and at the Alewife T-Station. Trail Map
The first phase of this proposed 25-mile rail trail is a 6.8 mile stretch connecting the towns of Lowell, Chelmsford, and Westford. When finished, the rest of the trail will link Carlisle, Acton, Concord, Sudbury, and Framingham -- following the 25-mile route of the old New Haven Railroad Framingham & Lowell line.
In 1848, the Worcester & Nashua Railroad opened for business with over 46 miles of track between Worcester and Nashua, New Hampshire. In 1982 the route was shut down for good, and it would be 20 more years until the Mass Highway Department completed what today is the Nashua River Rail Trail, built on the railroad’s former path, stretching 11 miles through the towns of Ayer, Groton, Pepperell and Dunstable. The trail offers a 10-foot wide paved surface for the entire length, and is open to pedestrians, bicyclists, inline skaters, wheelchairs, and cross-country skiers. The trail is popular for it’s scenic overlooks, impressive foliage in the fall, and for its access to commuter rail service between Boston and Fitchburg.