Hike of Quabbin Reservoir Watershed

Hardwick & Ware, MA

Sunday October 23rd, 2005

Hiking toward the reservoir Our hike down to the Quabbin Reservoir began at gate 45 in Hardwick. Tucked away at the end of a long dirt road, gate 45 is one of the reservoir's more secluded gates. On this overcast and breezy day, we were alone on the trails.

Placid stream A mile or two down the trail, we passed a beaver pond which drained into a small stream. Our route paralleled the stream for a while. The heavy rainfall overnight had swelled the stream.

Raging stream Stream approaching reservoir In an instant, the stream passed from flat ground over the crest of a hill and began its tumble down to the reservoir; leveling off a bit on the final leg of its journey.

Reservoir through trees Our first glimpse of the reservoir was through a stand of trees.

Choppy waters We managed to make our way onto some rocks at the water's edge. The wind coming across the reservoir from the west made it's surface rather choppy.

Us standing at water's edge After completing our hike we proceeded to Quabbin Park at the reservoir's southern tip. We didn't have enough time to do a second hike as we had originally contemplated, but we did walk a short distance down to the water's edge near Hank's Picnic Area.

View from Quabbin Hill We then passed by Enfield Lookout and climbed the observation tower on top of Quabbin Hill. Looking west from the tower's base, this view includes Mt. Tom and the Holyoke Range.

Windsor Dam monument Windsor Dam The Windsor Dam was our final stop. It's 2,640 foot length and 170 foot height serves to contain the reservoir's 412 billion gallons of water.

Jim and Amanda This brain teaser is a view directly down into the Windsor Dam's spillway. Amidst the rocks, a reflection of sky can be seen on the water's surface.

Jim and Amanda The spillway emerges from the underpass and continues downstream.

Medal winners A view from the Windsor Dam looking northeast toward Quabbin Hill.

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