I love these little discoveries that leave me wondering how did I not find this place sooner: this week, it was Winant Park in Concord, near St. Paul’s School. I’d seen it listed on the city’s map of area trails, but had never managed to find time for a visit until recently.
My first attempt at a visit ended quickly due to ice on the trail, as seen in the photo below. A few spring-like February days later, I returned and enjoyed 45 good minutes in the woods.
Piles of snow edged the parking lot and some stretches of trail, but a warm week had melted a great deal of snow and left the trails muddy. There were a few other cars in the trailhead parking lot, which is easy to find on Fisk Road just off Pleasant Street.
The park is wooded, with a pair of vistas I enjoyed: one featuring the State House dome (a view obviously preserved with diligent tree-trimming) and one of the hills and low mountains to the south and southwest. A kiosk at the trailhead and informational signs along the trails offer information about the park’s history. The trail network is simple and well-marked.
This is an urban park, with “urban” being relative; we’re talking Concord here, not Boston. It’s not a destination park like Monadnock or Pawtuckaway. It’s an easy stop for anyone in or near Concord, though, and it’s a fine place for a quiet walk in the woods. Make a point of finding that southwestern vista, which might not be so visible once the trees leaf out.
In kindness to the trails and their maintainers, I’ll wait until mud season is over before I pay another visit here. But I will be back.