NoticeThe Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Division of Water Supply Protection has closed all Ware River watershed roads to motor vehicle, horse, and bicycle traffic (except in an emergency or with prior approval) due to the spring “mud” season. An announcement will be made when the roads are re-opened to traffic. For more information, please contact the Watershed Rangers at 413-323-0192.
Barre, Hubbardston, Oakham, Phillipston, Princeton, Rutland, Templeton, and Westminster.
The DCR owns approximately 23,000 acres in an area commonly known as the Ware River watershed . Located in Central Massachusetts between the Quabbin Reservoir and the Wachusett Reservoir, the Ware River watershed is the land and water which drain to the MWRA diversion facility on the Ware River in Barre. The water that enters the intake travels to either the Quabbin or Wachusett Reservoir through an underground tunnel, the Quabbin aqueduct.
Maps and Regulations
Things to know before you go
The primary purpose of DCR water and surrounding lands is drinking water supply. Public access, therefore, is carefully regulated and controlled to protect over 2 million people’s source of drinking water. State regulations require all entry and exit through gates or other designated areas only. Anything that could pollute the water supply system, such as litter or refuse of any sort, is prohibited. Please observe restrictions on recreational activities. Direct water contact activities, such as swimming and wading, are strictly prohibited by regulation.
- Shoreline Fishing
- Biking allowed on designated trails only. No off-road mountain biking allowed, excluding rail trails.
- Walking Trails
- Bird Watching
- Hunting (Restrictions)
- Skiing (Cross-Country)
- Snowmobiling (Restrictions)
- Horseback Riding Trails (Restrictions)
Things to know regarding activities
DCR permits public access and recreational activities which are compatible with protection of the drinking water supply, and these other objectives:
apparent wilderness character stewardship
natural resource management
historic and prehistoric site preservation
long-term ecosystem health improvement/biological diversity