The new Powder House Hill Trails Network includes the 44 acre Flint Woods, the adjacent 43 acre Village Woods and the nearby 10 acre Bonney Woods. This listing describes the recreational trails through the healthy mixed forests of the Flint Woods and the Village Woods whose trails link directly between both of these woods. The Farmington Village Corporation (Water Department) and the Bonney Woods Corporation now manage all three woods on Powder House Hill as one park. In 1988 the Flint Woods were donated to the Bonney Woods Corporation to preserve the land for park and recreational purposes and to leave the property in an undisturbed natural state.
Thanks to a 2010-2012 state grant, local contributors and numerous volunteer hours the public can now enjoy many new trails which have been developed as well as previously existing trails which are greatly improved.
Trail users will find trail resurfacing, remarkably enhanced drainage, new bridges, plus new trail name signs and kiosks. The main trailhead kiosk at the Flint Woods and Village Woods parking area includes a new, detailed map. All the trails in this priceless, community resource are now more suitable for year round use by outdoor enthusiasts of all abilities and ages.
Trails range from the many, easy, well worn improved trails on relatively level terrain (like most of the Flint Woods trails) to some newly developed single track paths in Village Woods (near Box Shop Hill) on moderately steep slopes. These moderate difficulty trails include the western end of Ridge Road, Switchback, Sideshot and parts of Low Traverse. The map indicates which are single track paths and clearly visible contour lines assist with route planning. Multiple loops are possible without retracing one's steps.
Scenic overlooks are impressive and multiply as fall foliage drops to reveal views of Mt. Blue, its surrounding northwest foothills and the Sandy River valley. Sunsets from the Box Shop Hill summit area (see map) can be spectacular. This summit is encircled by the western end of West Trail where it intersects with Flint Connector and Ridge Road.
Three very interesting old wells in Flint Woods, a very easy walk from the parking area, once contained rainbow trout. The wells were dug after the civil war as a part of the Farmington Village water system. There are two vernal pools where in wet seasons wood frogs and amphibians abound. Trek quietly to hear and see the wood frogs. The covered reservoir (Farmington Public Water supply) is at the center of the Village Woods. See if you can locate the intriguing, round Old Stand Pipe. Only the base remains of this water storage tank built of steel in the early 1900’s. It is on the western slope of Ridge Road (see map) and can easily be missed. The Stand Pipe was found to be used for target practice by the youth of the neighborhood.
The location of the 1817 Powder House, for which the entire hill is named, is still uncertain. It was a "substantial brick magazine for deposit of military stores". Maybe you will solve the mystery of where it was located as you hike around!
Trails will have continued improvements over time. Trails on the northwest boundary of the Flint Woods provide access to many off property trails, snowmobile trails and the Powder House Hill summit.
The Access Road to Village Woods is open for the permitted uses and authorized vehicles only.
For more information please contact:Bonney Woods Corporation
Main trailhead on Anson Street/Titcomb Hill Road: From ME Route 4/ME Route 27 (Main Street) in downtown Farmington, turn right onto Anson Street on the north side of the Franklin County Courthouse. Continue on Anson Street 0.5 miles up Anson Street hill to the parking area turnout on the left, which is marked with a green sign. You will also spot a larger, yellow Powder House Hill Trails kiosk including a map and information. Flint Woods and Village Woods are about an eighth of a mile beyond the Bonney Woods parking area which is on the right.
Box Shop Hill trailheads: From ME Route 4/ME Route 27 (Main Street) in downtown Farmington head north out of town. Pass the Franklin County Courthouse on your right. In about an eighth of a mile, at a fork in the road, take the slightly right fork heading straight onto Box Shop Hill. The WWI memorial arch will be on your left. After passing three homes on the right you will come to the Ridge Road trailhead, marked only with a small, green trail sign marked "Ridge Road". Continuing ahead about 150 feet you will come to the Switchback trailhead and similar, small sign marked "Switchback". Continuing ahead about another 400 feet (you will pass a red fire hydrant on your left and then go just over the gentle crest of the road) you will come to the Sideshot trailhead and similar, small sign marked "Sideshot". There is no formal parking area.
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