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Beaver Brook Meadow/Steele Farm
Recreational uses - Hiking, cross-country skiing, horse-back riding, sledding, skating, bird watching and nature study. The Community Garden portion on Middle Road has gardening spots for town residents.
Trails - There is a large trail network on this site with 5 access points along town roads. This access points are: 1) on Hill Road about .25 mile from Rt. 111, 2) on Hill Road about 200 yards south of the North Cemetery, 3) on Middle Road at the Steele Farm farmhouse, 4) on Middle Road about 200 yards west of the Steele Farm farmhouse and 5) at the Middle Road intersection with Depot Road. The trail that starts on Hill Road near Rt. 111 is accessed by walking across the hay field to the wood line. There is a Nature Trail sign at the wood line. The trail that starts at the Steele Farm farmhouse runs straight down the hill from the parking area into the pasture. This trail follows the worn path of the farm equipment and is the only trail on the site that is not marked. See the accompanying map for full details.
Parking - Off road parking is available at the Steele Farm farmhouse and on Hill Road near the cemetery.
Cautions - Use caution when crossing the footbridges and boardwalks. They can be slippery when wet. Beware of poison ivy, ticks and underground yellow-jacket nests.
Total land area - 110 acres
Beaver Brook Meadow
This area contains an open hay field abutting Hill Road. The field is being mowed regularly to prevent reversion to forest. The remainder of the site is wooded. In the clearing there is a stone bench near the corner of the stone wall. There are good views to the south and southwest. Look for dogwoods near the clearing at the top of the hill.
History - The town purchased this 31.5 acres for conservation land in 1976 for $41,300. The state reimbursed the town almost one half of the purchase price.
The view from Steele Farm is one of the town’s most beautiful scenic vistas. The fields have been used seasonally for pasturing cattle. Remnants of a Christmas tree farm on the site have provided trees for residents until recently. Glades of spruce and pines are now reaching maturity. There are also remnants of an apple orchard on the western hillside. Two ponds provide refuge for waterfowl and bird life. The back, or southern end, of the parcel is wetlands.
Steele Farm contains a historic farmhouse and barn. The farmhouse in an 18th century post and beam structure. The barn was built to replace a previous one blown down in the 1958 hurricane. The foundation for the barn includes parts of grave stones from the North Cemetery that were damaged or destroyed by falling trees during the same hurricane. The ice house on the Steele Farm property was donated by the West family of Boxborough in 1997 and moved to its current site by volunteers from the Boxborough Historical Society in 1998. For more information on the ice house, please visit the Boxborough Historical Society’s home page which can be found on the town’s web site under community organizations.
The Steele Farm portion of this site is managed by the Steele Farm Advisory Committee.
History - The town purchased this parcel for municipal use in 1994 for $450,000.
Boxborough residents are encouraged to plant garden plots here. If you would like to reserve space for gardening, contact the town hall to get the Community Garden coordinator’s name and phone number. The gardens are accessible from Middle Road at the intersection with Depot Road.