Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Bay Circuit Trail: Ashland Aspects.

The "Proposed" Ashland Commuter Rail Station.

I made a recent trip to Ashland and decided to get a basic orientation of the rail station to the nearest Bay Circuit trail segment, a short trek down Ponderosa Road

One comic aspect of it is that many maps, including Google, indicate the station is 'proposed' when it's clearly been in existence since I passed it one September night in 2006 on a transcontinental Amtrak. 

And you thought digitization would lead to lightening speed updates and molecular levels of descriptive accuracy. Naaah.

And, what's funnier, it is clear that some workmanship shoddiness has already occurred.

The relatively new metal under-structures exhibit significant corrosion which may be attributable to poor sealing of the concrete pouring beds. The winter freeze/thaw cycles have led to seepage of the highly corrosive ice melt salts to a degree where it even attacks the all weather galvanized stuff. It's either a bad design or slipshod execution or some combination.

But that's a mere digression. Ashland is out at the furthest western edge of the Bay Circuit and has its own impressive endowment of amenities.

The Bay Circuit Trail passes fairly close to the station coming down from Sudbury and the Town Forest  to the north to follow a stretch of the Sudbury River east before heading south. 

Ashland DPW Salt Shed.

The nearest north bound trail access walking from the train station is just beyond a salt storage shed at Ashlands  DPW complex. 

The south bound counterpart is along an old river side driveway at the DPW complex lot entrance. It trends easterly toward Sherborn.

 Along the way are options for a history walk conceived by the historical society with additional amenities along the south side of town including Ashland State Park.

Ashland State Park.

"The Town of Ashland's ideal location midway between Boston and Worcester provides easy access to the interstate highway system and the Massachusetts Turnpike. Ashland was, in earlier times, a stopping point on a major Indian trail which later became known as the Bay Path, connecting Cambridge and Connecticut. It was here that a community of Natick Indians was established as the Village of Magunkaquog in about 1659. Once the original starting point of the world famous Boston Marathon, which still runs through Ashland, the town is also known as the site of Henry Warren's invention of the electric clock, later manufactured here under the Telechron name."
Succinct Summary from the Town.

A recent source of excitement among local land conservation enthusiasts was the town's acquisition of Warren Woods from Northeastern University. All in all it is a town well situated for a sustainable future.