Central MA

Jewell Hill

Ashby, Ashburnham, and Fitchburg

296 acres

Photo: Ted Hoosick

Discover breathtaking views and an outdoor enthusiast’s playground on this serene stretch that formerly supported a New England dairy farm.

Share

Plan Your Visit
  • Overview
  • Ideas for Your Visit
  • Admission & Hours
  • Directions & Contact Info
  • What You'll Find
  • Property Map
  • Regulations & Advisories

Overview

Featuring broad meadows and pastoral scenery, Jewell Hill offers opportunities for four seasons of outdoor recreation and an ecologically critical sweep of open space in Central Massachusetts. A placid country road bisects the landscape, purchased by the Crocker family in 1917 and shaped into an award-winning dairy farm by the 1950s. The property’s agricultural output shifted to hay production after the regional decline of the dairy industry, and its 296 acres—which abut 2,500 additional acres of watershed conservation land—continue to provide protection for the City of Fitchburg’s water supply as well as critical habitat to many species negotiating the changing climate. Just a stone’s throw from several busy cities and towns, Jewell Hill also provides a soothing natural escape for snowshoers, cross-country skiers, birders, and hikers.

Ideas for Your Visit

After glimpsing the panorama of Mount Wachusett along the 0.7-mile Willard Trail, set out for the 1,411-foot Hudson Overlook. Hike to the summit through thickets of mountain laurel along the 0.6-mile Jewell Hill Trail, and when you reach the scenic overlook, look east over a landscape blanketed in forest; on days free of clouds and haze, you’ll see the Boston skyline 45 miles in the distance. After, loop back to the former farmstead via Olaf’s Run and Crocker Farm Trail.

Admission & Hours

Open year-round, daily, sunrise to sunset. Allow a minimum of one and a half hours.

Directions & Contact Info

Crocker Road
Ashby, MA 01431

Best route: Use Rindge Road to Crocker Road to stay on paved surfaces.
(Note that Jewell Hill Road, which approaches the reservation from the opposite direction, is partially unpaved.)

Parking: Please park in the designated parking area at the top of the hill on Crocker Rd. past the house and barn, shortly before the road turns to dirt.

Get directions from Google Maps

What You'll Find

Jewell Hill features a variety of habitats including hayfields and meadows, forested and open wetlands, streams and seeps, and hardwood and hemlock-dominated forests. This diversity of habitat types supports a great diversity of plants and wildlife, including bobolinks and barn swallows in the grasslands; indigo buntings, bears, and bobcats in the forest; and goldthread and painted trillium along wetland edges.

Property Map

We recommend that you take a photo of the map on your phone so you can refer to it during your visit, or download a trail map before you head out.

Regulations & Advisories

  • Dogs must be leashed at all times.
  • Please respect the privacy of residents who live on the property.
Before Setting Out
More to Explore
The View From Here
Discover More Places

Join the Trustees

Enjoy 120 sites featuring inspired trails, historic homes, beautiful gardens, farms, summer camps and more.
Become a Member

Lend a Hand

Join a community passionate about a sustainable future and engaged in diverse projects across the state.
Volunteer

Support Our Work

We rely on your generous support to protect the irreplaceable landscapes and landmarks of Massachusetts.
Donate