Hiking Trails

to do today: Cool off at Walden Pond | BU today


Walden Pond State Reserve


Monday to Friday, 5 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. weekends, 7 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. Boats are welcome on the water from 5 a.m. on Saturdays and Sundays. The park is closed to everyone, including pedestrians, when the parking lot is full. You can call 978-369-3254 to find out if capacity is reached or to reserve a place for a guided tour.


915 Walden St., Concord, Mass. (Find routes here.)


Parking costs $ 8 for Massachusetts vehicles, $ 30 for out-of-state residents. Massachusetts residents can purchase a $ 60 full season parking pass here, valid for all state parks.

Why should I go?

Walden Pond, known around the world as the place where Henry David Thoreau holed up to contemplate nature’s magnificent spirituality, is now a cool place where Boston area swimmers and nature lovers can escape. in the summer heat.

At 103 feet deep, Walden Pond, officially known as the Walden Pond State Reservation, is a kettle-hole glacial pond and the deepest natural body of freshwater in Massachusetts. As a result, the water remains (relatively) cool. The reservation is part of the Massachusetts State Park System and is a designated National Historic Landmark.

In the vast recreational universe between contemplation and competition, there is a lot to do in Walden. Miles of hiking trails run through the reserve’s 335 acres, and bird watchers may spot kingfishers, blackbirds, chickadees, blue herons, and red-tailed hawks soar above the surrounding forest. Resources for self-guided tours are available here. Guided walks are offered throughout the summer, but it’s best to call a few days in advance to reserve a spot. Park rangers instituted a one-way trail loop to promote social distancing.

At the northeast corner of the pond, visitors can see the site of Thoreau’s hut, where he lived from July 1845 to September 1847 (a replica of the hut can be found next to the parking lot). However, the house site and the trails between the Walden Pond Visitor Center and the house site are temporarily closed for accessibility reasons.

Until June 18, lifeguards are only on duty at weekends. After that, lifeguards will be on duty at the beach from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. until Labor Day. On weekends and most evenings, kayaks and canoes glide across the water, often dragging fishing lines. The pond is stocked with trout every year, but licensed anglers can also hope to catch sunfish, perch, and smallmouth bass. It is important to note that dogs or other pets are do not allowed in the park, nor grills, camping or alcoholic drinks. There are no trash cans on the beach, so guests should take their trash with them when leaving. It’s about relaxing and enjoying the pristine view during your well-deserved day there.

The state-of-the-art Walden Pond Visitor Center, open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., offers information on the history and geography of the pond. Walden related merchandise is sold in the gift shop and public restrooms are available. The net zero energy building, which means it meets the highest sustainability standards, is LEED Gold certified, which would have made Thoreau proud.

Explore related topics: