Are you in Nantucket and have no idea where to take your dog for a morning, afternoon, or evening stroll? If your dog loves exploring unique trails, then below are some of the best places to consider taking your canine companion for that relieving walk or run.
1. Sanford Farm & Ram Pasture
This trail is among the most popular and highly rated Nantucket Conservation Foundation properties. It has well-marked trails, beautiful vistas, and ocean views.
Also, you might be lucky to see turtles, osprey, hawks, and other wildlife in season. Sanford Farm makes a very versatile choice. You can keep it to a fast 1.7-mile loop or a longer 3.1-mile trek.
If you are in a more jolly mood and your dog needs a lot of exercise, it makes for a beautiful 6-mile adventure, taking you out of the island’s southern shoreline. You may ride your bike while your dog runs alongside you or put it in a basket.
In the summer, Hummock Pond has reported the presence of algae, which pose a hazard to dogs. It would be best not to allow your dog to drink from the pond. It is also worth noting that there are no public restrooms, telephones, or water fountains on this trail.
2. Tupancy Links
If you have a thirst for the Sanford Farm beauty and views but have no time for a 6-mile stretch, Tupancy Links is the perfect compromise.
Originally a 9-hole golf club, the area now features an easy-to-follow 1.5 miles of marked trails that run through several of the course’s old holes. Looking closely, you can still see some greens and tee box outlines.
Tupancy Links is now mostly used for dog exercises as it provides wide open spaces for games of fetch. While at it, you can admire the picturesque views of Nantucket’s north shore.
Nonetheless, you are to carry a leash around the cliff; following it is very steep. Also, to preserve the area’s cleanliness, you should clean up after your fur baby.
3. Squam Swamp
This gem should definitely feature on your list of beautiful places to walk your pup. As the name suggests, this spot is much more enclosed, dense, and wet than the famous Sanford and Tupancy Links. Due to its lush nature, you must keep your dog on a leash to avoid getting separated.
You will be wise to follow the numbered post that directs and lead you through the 1.75-mile loop trail along mowed grassy fields. It winds past the sheep pastures, leading to the sheep habitat. Some humans live here too.
Along the course, you come across portions of deciduous forests, over boardwalks traversing boggy streams, and big bunches of grapes. If you happen to visit during the spring season, you will be in for the treat of seeing flocks of sheep running through the pasture.
Squam Swamp may not offer the view of ocean vistas as some other trails may, but it has thousands of green ferns and glamorous bogs that are rare on the island.
4. ‘Sconset Bluff Walk
This path is not easy to find, but it is worth exploring. It begins at Front Street near the ‘Sconset Market and takes you along the bluff overlooking the sandy beach. On your left, you will find some of the most delightful waterfront homes in Sconset. They feature perfectly manicured lawns and gardens.
Keeping your dog on a leash would be best, considering you are strolling in the resident’s backyard. Here you have perfectly manicured lawns and gardens to admire.
Over the years, the walking terrain has been cut short due to erosion, so once you meet an abrupt dead end, it is advisable to turn back.
5. Masquetuck Trail
This trail is a short one but is not easy to overlook. It has views of West Polpis Harbor that are worth the trek. You can take on any of the paths, to the end, without the risk of getting lost.
On your way, you’ll come across a deciduous forest with ferns, mushrooms, and many mossy tree roots.
In some places, the trail ends up on the Polpis Harbor shores. If the tide is low, you have the opportunity and option of walking along the beach for a while, or you may choose to stay on the trail and take in the beautiful harbor view.
6. Windswept Bogs
There is more to love than hate on your walk here, from different lengths of the walk, a variety of terrains, from active bee hives and cranberries, to a great pond. If you want, this can be a long walk.
Considering your energy level and program, you may take whatever loops and paths you want. The circles and tracks allow your dog to do long straight runs to release some pent-up energy.
The Stump Pond trail leads you into the forest along the right side. The pond is a fun, boggy, tree-rooted, tangled saunter. The best time for a walk along this pond is the fall when the leaves are turning on the deciduous trees and mosquitoes are dormant. On the left side of the Stump Pond, you experience the never-ending moor walk.
Leash Alert: The bogs nearest Polpis Road as you start or end your walk are very close to houses. Some of the residents have flocks of chickens, guinea fowls, or both. Keep your dog close if they have a habit of chasing after poultry.
Also note that, at specified times of the year, the bogs are usually closed due to flooding or pesticide application.
Your dog’s daily walk is likely one of the highlights of their day. Walking your canine friend can give them more than just the essential bathroom break. It can give them the advantage of physical exercise, mental stimulation, and a chance to keep tabs on what’s happening in the neighborhood.
Nantucket is beautiful and a great place to adventure with your furry friend. There are over 12,000 acres of open space to explore, and it might probably take you a year to explore them all. The above are great places for starters.