A blue trail (also known as blueway or water trail) is a dedicated stretch of river that enjoys special clean water safeguards and is a destination for fishing, boating and other recreation. Just as hiking trails are designed to help people explore the land, blue trails help people discover rivers. Blue trails provide a fun, exciting way to get kids outdoors, connect communities to treasured landscapes, and are economic drivers benefiting local businesses and quality of life. (American Rivers)
The first phase of this project is the Miller River Blue Trail which runs from Athol to Orange, or Orange to Athol, for some. In 2012 MRWC mobilized a trail stewardship team to care for this first trail segment. The Blue Trail Guide for this stretch is available at a variety of locations.
MRWC continues to prepare new blue trail segments on the Millers & Otter Rivers. The Upper Millers River Blue Trail running from Winchendon to Birch Hill Dam is moving along well in 2014. MRWC continues developing a pair of trails on the Otter River: one near the headwaters of the river and another where it meets the Millers River. View our draft Trail Map and share your input!
Our first Otter River Blue Trail access is on Plant Rd in Templeton. With the cooperation of both the City of Gardner and the Town of Templeton, this simple natural paddling launch was set up in June 2012. If you wish to help on this or other efforts, please contact us.
Plant Road paddlers access along the Otter River opened for 2014. Volunteers reinstalled the access ShoreMax mats at the Plant Rd put-in along the Otter River Blue Trail. The mats help paddlers put their boats in the water without “sinking” into the mud. Mats will be in place till the late fall of 2014.