around Ipswich is still preserved from development,
and you are unlikely to see much traffic on these roads.
The area you’ll ride across could be called horse
country, and chances are you’ll see more than
a horseback rider training on the many farms that dot
the area. The extension to Great Island will bring you
to an often-overlooked beach over the Ipswich River,
directly across Crane Beach. In just one ride, this
is a chance to go from deep green to deep blue, and
without wasting too much of your energy since the ride
is almost flat.
At average speed, the complete loop should
take about 4 hours including stops.
Here are the detailed ride directions:
Wenham Church, take left on Route 1A for one third of
on Larch road, which becomes Essex Road
At an intersection
with sign for Route 22, turn left on Woodbury Road (no
on Bridge Street after short descent
on Sagamore Street (visible, old-fashioned street sign)
At the end
of Sagamore Street (golf course on left), turn right
on Route 133
Half a mile
down Route 133, turn left on Northgate Road (this is
a dangerous intersection; stop on the road shoulder
to check traffic before turning)
intersection, turn left on Argilia Road. Less than a
mile later is the small Hamlin Reservation on the right.
This is a nice place for a rest stop or a short walk
in the nearby Great Marsh
At the stop
sign, turn right and go straight on Jeffreys Moore road.
If you do not want to visit Great Island, which adds
9 miles to the ride, go right at the stop sign, stay
on the main road turning left, and take left at the
next large intersection on Topsfield road
If you go
to Great Island, continue straight until you reach the
island, actually a narrow peninsula in the marshes ending
in a large hill; stay on the right until you reach the
beach (obvious parking lot in front of you); the road
ends a few yards on the right at a private housing community.
The beach slopes down to the Essex River opening out
to the ocean, with great views of Crane Beach on the
other side of the bay.
beach, take right on Bayview road and always stay close
to the water; at a fork, take right down and cross a
short valley under a large rectangular building on top
of a hill.
soon reach Jeffreys Moore road again; ride back the
way you came towards Ipswich; before reaching the town
center, turn right on East Street after a short climb
(large tree and small wooden garage shack at the intersection),
then immediately left on North Main Road
At the main
intersection down in Ipswich, go straight on Topsfield
on Mill Street (large traffic sign); From this point,
the ride is mostly in the woods and very shady. You
will also ride past Appleton Grass Rides (on the left
side, sign and parking lot), a very nice reservation
that is a great place for a walk.
Mill Street until you reach your departure point at
the Wenham church.