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Mendon Ponds Park Walk

by Max Lent


Location:  See Map


Mendon Ponds Park is a multiuse park.  During the summer it is frequented by picnickers, swimmer, canoers, kayakers, hikers, bikers, horse riders, mountain bikers, birdwatchers, runners, dog walkers, orienteers, and more.  It is not uncommon to see signs at the park entrances announcing directions to wedding parties, family reunions, and birthday parties.  The park is heavily used and abused.  Dog walkers often have their dogs off leash, horse riders and mountain bikers are often seen where they are not allowed.  Some of the parties get pretty loud.  Automobile traffic can be heavy at times.

During the winter Mendon Ponds Park is a haven for cross country skiers.  Local schools hold ski races throughout the season.  The trails close to the ponds can be crowded and icy.  The trails in the woods on the hills can be hard to navigate.  

Amazingly, it is still possible to see wildlife, experience a few minutes of peace and quiet, and to do some great hiking within the park.  Stay close to the road and the parking lots and you will see more people and dogs.  Follow one of the many trails that circle the park and you will be alone in minutes.   


The north half of the park is more heavily used than the south half.  One of the reasons for this is that the south half of the park is a protected nature preserve.  There are restrictions against dogs, horses, and runners in the protected nature preserve.  I have never seen anyone enforce the restrictions, but the signs do reduce the intrusions.

More Rochester Walks.


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