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The North Shore area has extraordinary recreational trails. Since 1982, Essex County Trail Association has worked to protect and preserve hundreds of miles of trails in Essex, Hamilton, Ipswich, Topsfield, Wenham, and West Newbury. With the help of our team of trail stewards and many volunteers, ECTA maintains and repairs these trails in partnership with public and private landowners, land trusts and local conservation commissions. Our members provide a vital source of funding for trail projects. Come explore these incredible trails, and help us continue our work by supporting ECTA.
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May 24, 2021: UPDATE The staff at DCR have addressed the water issue at markers 13/18 in Willowdale. There was beaver activity there causing the water to overflow the trail. They removed the branches

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Now that the snow has melted it’s surprising to see how much debris is out there on the trails! This is a great time to pitch in while you are out enjoying the warmer weather. Clearing sticks

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Thank you to all our Spring for the Trails participants

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Spring for the Trails 1/2 Marathon results are in! Congratulations to all our winners! Men Overall:   Todd Callaghan (1:33:51) Women Overall:   Amy Hollshwandner (1:52:33) Men 70+:   Paul Lambert

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  • All trails

    All trails

    The trails in our area are a bit treacherous in places now that we have 4” of snow over the ice. The snow prevents yak …Read more
  • Discover Hamilton/Hamilton

    Discover Hamilton/Hamilton

    Two major trees down- one on the Harvard forest portion of the trail and the second on the Pingree Reservation trail portion. Both passable but …Read more
  • Warren Weld on Apple in Essex

    Warren Weld on Apple in Essex

    Lots of debris on trail after storm, nothing impassable. Very wet up at the cross trail intersection, that’s no surprise! Wear your boots.Read more
  • West Newbury

    West Newbury

    Multiple trees down on Riverbend trail leading from the river up to hay field. Impassable.Read more
Find a trail with our new Trailfinder Tool*. Select from the options on the left to find trails that meet those criteria.

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*Disclaimer: Please bear in mind that ECTA does not own the listed properties and does not guarantee the information as current. We have tried hard to list the allowed activities but some are seasonal-only, weather-dependent, or require a special permit. Landowners may have changed their rules so please follow all posted signage and let us know in the comments or via an email if you notice anything that could be updated. In addition there are some trails which may not yet be listed for certain activities. If in doubt please always check with the landowner.

  • 28th Annual Equine Expo & Tack Sale (22 Apr 2023)
    on April 22, 2023 at 1:00 pm

    SATURDAY APRIL 22, 2023 SAVE THE DATE 28th EQUINE EXPO & TACK SALE Essex County Trail Association is hosting the 28th annual Equine Expo & Tack Sale to be held on Saturday, April 22nd in the Arena Building at the Topsfield Fairgrounds on Route 1, Topsfield, MA.   For more information or to donate used or new horse related items for our […]

  • 5th Annual Thanks for the Trails 5k (25 Nov 2022)
    on November 25, 2022 at 2:30 pm

    SAVE THE DATE!  ECTA is holding its 5th Annual Thanks for the Trails 5k and Kids Fun Run the day after Thanksgiving, November 25, 2022, at Patton Park in Hamilton.   All 2022 events will offer a $10 discount for ECTA Members. Become a Member BEFORE registration!

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