New England Trail

Overlook at Richardson-Zlogar cabin. Monadnock in center, Mt Crace in foreground

The New England National Scenic Trail (NET) is a 215-mile hiking trail route that has been in existence for over half a century. The NET travels through 41 communities in Connecticut and Massachusetts, and is comprised primarily of the historic Mattabesett, Metacomet, and Monadnock (M-M-M) Trail systems.

The NET was designated as a National Scenic trail on March 30, 2009 and is administered by the National Park Service in collaboration with numerous local partners, notably the Appalachian Mountain Club.

Find out more and use the interactive map at Trail Sections 16 & 17 are within the town of Northfield.


The Richardson-Zlogar Cabin offers views of Mt. Grace (MA), Mt. Ascutney (VT), Mt. Monadnock (NH), and Mt. Wachusett (MA). Cabin amenities include a single loft with 3 twin mattresses and 1 crib mattress, 3 benches with cushions, 2 tent platforms, a picnic table (outside), kitchen table and stainless steel countertop (inside), a privy.

Reserve the cabin in advance and get up-to-date trail guides at:

The cabin is located on land owned by the Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust, and managed by the Appalachian Mountain Club. A network of trails, including the blue Alexander Hill Loop, are located here.

Trailhead Parking

There are four areas to access the trail in Northfield with parking, from north to south:

  • Under the powerlines at the end of Alexander Hill Rd.
  • At the Northfield Brush Mountain Conservation Area Trailhead on Gulf Rd.
  • On the shoulder of South Mountain Rd. near the intersection with Old Wendell Rd.
  • Pull off of Mountain Rd. where the trail heads into the Erving State Forest. Do not block the gate.


On the shore of the glacial Lake Hitchcock (12,000 BP), these hills are part of a larger sacred landscape that was especially significant to Native Americans as the home of  Hobomok (Hobomac), a giant spirit-being who slept under the hills and when called upon slew the giant beaver whose body became Wequamps (Mt. Sugarloaf).

Established Native paths, including part of the Gulf Road, led colonists to Squakheag. Later called Northfield, this area was long the northernmost outpost of European colonization (1673-1775), and at the southernmost range of the Abenaki.

On Brush Mountain, you’ll pass cellar holes that mark the site of Calvin Swan’s homestead. Swan (1799-1875) was a noted free black carpenter, farmer, sawmill owner, and community leader in Northfield.

Printable Trifold about the Northfield sections of the NET

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