Moreland Woods

On Tuesday, I decided to try out one of the trails listed on Greater Worcester Land Trust’s “Hike Week”.  I have enjoyed hiking some of GWLT’s trails with my family.  But, for the first time, I wanted to try a solo hike.  I have often passed by  the GWLT sign on Moreland Street and wondered about this site.  After checking their website, I found out that there was parking nearby on Orrison Street.  At first, I almost turned away – there are plenty of “No Trespassing” signs.  However, when I looked to the left, I saw that I had overlooked a small GWLT sign covered with Virginia Creeper. 

The trail begins with a rather steep decline into the woods.  Although this is a residential area of the city, upon entering the woods, I felt like I was transported to quiet sylvan glen.  The path follows an old stone wall, that was built colonial farmers.  Sunlight dappled golden beech leaves. 

I crossed a small, trickling creek and entered a young pine and deciduous forest.  The forest floor was soft with a mix of composted leaves and copper pine needles.  

Woolly Mammoth?

A larger stream could be crossed by a rocky weir.  Golden leaves playfully glided atop the rivulets and small waterfalls.  A fallen tree evoked images of a primeval time when Woolly Mammoths lived here.  

The color palette of early fall was a mix of bright gold, dull browns, copper, and lingering greens.  But, every so often, I would come upon a bright splash of crimson. 

Hygrocybe coccinea -Scarlet Waxy Cap
Birch Grove

A small stand of birch trees reached for the canopy like silver spires. In places, the trees appeared to glance my way with dark, hooded eyes.

Moreland Woods provides an easy walking experience with lots of visual interest. Hikers can enjoy a variety of trees, trickling creeks, and old stone walls. I recommend this walk if you are looking for a short, pleasant loop trail in a peaceful woodland environment within the city of Worcester.

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