Manchester Essex Woods

Directions:
From 128, take Exit 15 (School St.) heading away from Manchester. The main entrance is on the left.

Trail Maps:

  • Team Gloucester’s Manchester Woods Map (.pdf file. We make no claim to scale or accuracy).
  • Maps are posted at each entrance.
  • An official map is available from the Manchester-Essex Conservation Trust.

Why We Like It:
For the most part, the trails here are more moderate, along the lines of Dogtown, though there are some more difficult ones. It has a lot of variety and is a great way to mix things up.

Many of the trails are well marked and easily followed, and make great 45-75 minute training loops. Long runs can be a bit tricky, as we inevitably get over-ambitious and wind up lost in Essex. The ideal long run loop is along the “unmaintained trail”, a trail that is hard to find and harder to follow, but a great run if you can manage it. It’s marked with bright pink paint but there is no sign putting you to it, and the trail map is not quite accurate as to it’s location. It is very fun to run from Manchester Essex Woods to Gordon College.

Manchester Woods is not a good place to run after there’s been a lot of rain unless you plan on getting very wet and muddy, and the deer fly season is brutal.