Davis Corridor and Malcolm Land

Brief History

The Davis Corridor is a 156-acre parcel acquired by Carlisle for conservation between 1973 and 1995. It is a combination of 17 individual parcels that create a very large tract that abuts ecological research lands that are owned by Harvard University. The combined conservation lands of the Davis Corridor, Harvard University, and other abutting lands are generally referred to as Estabrook Woods.

The lands in this parcel were of historic importance in colonial days, providing an important road link between Billerica, Carlisle, and Concord along Two Rod Road and the Blood Farm trails. Pastures and woodlots were early uses of this land. Henry David Thoreau’s journals in the 1850’s describing walks on these trails, refer to the fact that farmers had largely abandoned the pastures there and forest vegetation was thriving.

Interesting Features

Today the most interesting feature of the Davis Corridor is the forested trail linkage it provides between Carlisle neighborhoods and from Carlisle to the extensive adjacent trails on conservation lands in Concord. The forest is primarily upland, with abundant oak, pine and maple. Streams, vernal pools and wetlands exist in some areas. It is a unique and wonderful property also because of its size and choice of trails.

Along the woodsy trails are historic relics: stone walls defining old roads and boundaries, granite town boundary markers (historic and current), two old fields reverting to forest, a nearly-filled-in wild cranberry bog, and the iron remains of a late 1800’s portable sawmill. A Native-American ceremonial site has been identified in this area.

The Davis Corridor area has been cited by the Massachusetts National Heritage and Endangered Species program as a core habitat with some supporting natural landscape, part of a large and important area in the region for biodiversity conservation.

Hiking Trails

The main hiking trails go from Bedford Road to Prospect Street and from Stearns Street to Punkatasset Hill (in Concord). A few cross-linking trails, as well as access trails to Long Ridge Road, Nowell Farm Road and Baldwin Road (via the Sachs Greenway), make a number of variations in itinerary possible. In wet periods, sections of the trail become large puddles or deep mud, so wear appropriate footwear.

Hiking, dog walking, horseback riding, bicycling and cross country skiing are popular activities on the trails. The access to Concord’s extensive trail makes this a very attractive corridor, as well.

Trail maps are available online on the Trails Committee website and can be purchased in hard copy at Town Hall and at Ferns Country Store.

Getting There

For access to the north end of Two Rod Road, use the parking lot at Malcolm Meadows on Stearns Street. Trails also start at Bedford Road (opposite Brook Street) and at the ends of Suffolk Lane, Long Ridge Road, Nowell Farm Road, and Prospect Street.

Planning Documents