Chestnut Hill is a hidden spot for a great hike. It’s not as popular as the main hiking and walking trails in Groton- Gibbet Hill or the Dog Park- but its unpopularity is what makes it special. There is minimal traffic on the trail making it a great spot to bring your dog along with you.
If you have a tame pooch, I would even suggest to take him or her off leash because there is a big field to run and play in and the forest is a massive playground for puppies. However, there is a stream that crosses the path which could be tempting for a naughty dog like mine. Luckily, the combination of both mine and my sisters strength could keep him from romping in the water, which saved us from a very muddy 5 minute ride home.
There are different hiking trials that you could try, the one that my sister and I chose brought us in a loop up a hill through the woods and along a marshy pond, but there were lots of places to chose a different path so have fun exploring all your options. We saw only one other couple walking near us and they were doing a different trail on top of one of the hills. The path they took looked interesting and tempting, but Cooper dragged us around the corner to what looked like an abandoned farm instead.
I would suggest wearing hiking boots or just some junky sneakers because the stream makes the dirt really muddy and you don’t want to ruin any beloved shoes. If you were planning on just hiking up to the top of the hill and back down, I’m sure you’d be fine, but otherwise, pack some sturdy shoes just in case.
It’s definitely a family friendly hike because it feels like you’re walking in someone’s backyard for most of it (that is if your backyard is anything like mine and is full of marshes and conservation lands). However, I’m not entirely sure where the ideal place is to have parked. I parked on Orchard Lane and didn’t get towed or ticketed so I would say it’s fine to park there, but if you get in trouble for it please don’t blame me. At the corner of Orchard Lane, there is what looks like a long dirt driveway, so I parked along side of it. From there, the three of us walked down the winding driveway and just after a massive pile of hay bails to our right, there was what looked like a trail up the hill and thus we began our journey.
I really enjoyed Chestnut Hill and would definitely suggest going. I’ll most certainly be back there again once the temperatures raise above freezing and hopefully Cooper will be good enough by then to let him roam free for a little while.