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The Minuteman Trail
 

What to Bring

Walking shoes   Backpack
Hat   Sunglasses
Sunscreen   Sweatshirt
Water   Snacks
Binoculars   All-terrain stroller (with kids)
 

Specs

  Directions
 
From Boston, take I-95 / route 128
Take exit 30 to route 2A west
Drive for about 1 mile and turn right at sign for Park headquarters/visitor center
  Good to know in advance
 
Free map at visitor center
  Etiquette
 
Stay on trail
Respect the rights of private families living within the park
 
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The Minuteman Trail

ID Card

Overall rating: Three-Star Rating Three-Star Rating Three-Star Rating Three-Star Rating Three-Star Rating
Difficulty: 2/5
  Time from Boston: 30 mins.
  Duration: A few hours/
half day
  Cost:

Free

  Main activity:

Walking and Families

  What do our ratings mean?
 
Walk in the footsteps of the Patriots (the real ones) on a trail through woods and wetlands. A great place to enjoy nature and bring kids

The Minuteman Trail is not only a great spot for a walk in forests and wetlands, but also a place that is central in American history—two great reasons to go there, (especially if you bring kids along).

Walking on the Minuteman Trail, you will be where the American Revolution started. In 1775, discontent was brewing in the American colony under the British rule. On April 19 of that year, British General Gage ordered an expedition to confiscate weapons hidden by the local militia, the “Minutemen”, under the command of Samuel Adams and John Hancock. Paul Revere completed his famous "midnight ride" on this trail to warn the patriots in Lexington, carrying word of the British troops’ departure from Boston and imminent arrival.

When the British arrived in the area the militiamen were ready. The first shot of the Revolution was fired on the Lexington green. In the ensuing confusion, eight revolutionaries were killed. By the time the British reached Concord to carry out their search mission, patriots in the area where ready to harass them. From that moment, British troops and patriots exchanged fire all along this road as the British retreated to Boston. The rest is history.
Fortunately, you will not need to walk here from Boston, as the British did (an impressive performance, considering they made the round-trip in a day and came back under heavy fire). You can instead start your walk at the visitor center near the parking lot. Exhibits will give you more information on the key players and events. Take a map of the trail to identify points of interest along the way.
The trail itself ends in a place called Meriam’s Corner near Concord. From the visitor center to there and back, allow about 3 hours—more if you stop frequently or explore some of the side trails, such as those around Hartwell Tavern. You can turn back sooner to make the walk shorter – this is not a loop.
Be particularly cautious when crossing the highway that leads to nearby Hanscom Field (several signs will erroneously announce the end of the trail there). Cars can turn in fast from route 2A, so check carefully for traffic and cross quickly.
If you like the place and want to come back, feel free to bring in your bike next time: the trail is open to bicycles, and it's a great place to run.
 
 
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