Cockermouth Forest

About the Property

The Cockermouth Forest is a favorite for many hikers in the region, as it offers modest to strenuous hikes, incredible views and numerous opportunities for observing wildlife year-round. Visitors can choose to explore Little Pond and the views from the nearby cliffs or trek up to Mount Crosby and Bald Knob with views of the White Mountains, Squam Lake, Lake Winnipesaukee and Newfound Lake.  

Trail Information

Little Pond via Romley-Remick Rd. and John F. Woodhouse Trail

Difficulty: 
Strenuous
Round-trip Distance: 
3.10 miles
Trail Markings: 
Yellow blazes

This trail climbs through the Forest Society’s ecoreserve section of the property.  You'll see a unique 9-acre bog surrounding Little Pond.  The rugged ridgeback overlooking Little Pond supports a patch of the uncommon red oak – pitch pine rocky ridge natural community.  This trail presents a great opportunity for wildlife viewing.

You can extend this hike by taking the Cliff Loop Option, which is moderate to strenuous and adds a half mile.

High Pasture Loop

Difficulty: 
Strenuous
Round-trip Distance: 
3.10 miles
Trail Markings: 
Yellow blazes

The High Pasture Loop takes you around the 2010 timber harvest and past the highest cellar hole on the property. You will experience a nice mix of hardwood and softwood forest with large openings along old logging roads.

Bald Knob and Mount Crosby

Difficulty: 
Strenuous
Round-trip Distance: 
4.00 miles
Trail Markings: 
Yellow blazes

There are two loops: The Bald Knob - Old Pasture Loop is 4.1 miles long. The Bald Knob - Remick Place Loop is 3.9 miles long. 

The ridge trail between Bald Knob and Mount Crosby is a typical mountainous ridge trail with minor ups and downs. 

The connector from High Pasture Loop to Tenney Lane is quite moderate and follows old roadways.

Beeline Trail

Difficulty: 
Strenuous
Round-trip Distance: 
0.20 miles
Trail Markings: 
Yellow blazes

Aptly named, this is a no-nonsense trail with unremitting steeps and serves as a straight-shot shortcut to the summit of Mount Crosby.

Old North Groton Road to Hardy Road Extension

Difficulty: 
Moderate
Round-trip Distance: 
3.40 miles

This out and back hike is a great moderate alternative for an enjoyable walk through the woods on old woods roads.  It’s a great opportunity to check out old cellar holes and think about past land use.

Property Details

The name “Cockermouth Forest” has historical significance in that from 1760 to 1790 the town of Groton was known as the town of Cockermouth, named for the river that runs through it.  Bill Wadsworth, who donated the land to the Forest Society, first came to the area to attend Cockermouth Boys Camp. 

The internal road network, old cellar holes and the history of the Remick Place (a circa 1830 kneewall cape formerly located on the property) indicate that much of the land was farmland in the early to mid 1800s. The Remick Place, including the stone foundation, was dismantled and rebuilt at a farm in New Hampton.  The house’s frame represented one of the last remaining examples of this type of construction. 

William B. Wadsworth, or simply, “B”, as he was affectionately known, was a professor of electrical engineering who held patents for ear protectors and aided in the development of earphones.  He began acquiring land in Groton in the 1950s in remembrance of youthful summers spent at the nearby Cockermouth Camp and managed the land for timber.  He blazed extensive hiking trails on the property, including a trail to Bald Knob, where he installed an antenna stanchion high on Bald Hill -- a testament to his fondness for tennis and electronics.  He actually carried a battery powered 12 volt TV up the 1,900-ft peak so he could watch the Wimbledon Tennis championship broadcast on Boston television. 

Circumstances of acquisition:   

In 1991 William Wadsworth donated 1,002 acres of his property as part of his estate plan.  His primary objective in donating the property was to protect the land’s diverse wildlife habitat.  This land is valued for its large size, wildlife habitat, timber production, and recreational experience. 

Recommended Properties Nearby

Groton

1 002 acres

Directions

Parking Area

There is a property sign, “Cockermouth Forest: John F. Woodhouse Trail” at the entrance. Follow a 300’ fairly passable road into a small parking area. Please don't block the gate when parking.

The Forest Society does not plow or guarantee access to this property or the parking area during the winter.  North Groton Road has “no parking” signs on the east side of the street.

Recreational Opportunities

  • Cross-country Skiing
  • Dog-walking
  • Hiking Trails
  • Hunting
  • Snowshoeing

Amenities

  • Parking area
  • Trail markers

Restrictions

  • No wheeled vehicles (including Bicycles)
  • No Motorized wheeled vehicles (ATVs, trucks, dirt bikes)
  • No Camping
  • No Fires
  • Carry in, Carry out all trash
  • No guaranteed winter access

Regions