Whittier Hill Walk Offers Spectacular Views, Poetry and History
A spectacular view of the bucolic hills and the Pow Wow River in the valley below rewarded hikers who made the steep walk to the top of Whittier Hill in Amesbury on July 15.
The hike, sponsored by Greenbelt and the Merrimack River Watershed Association, climbed a route that had evolved from Native American path to carriage road to trail in the town’s history.
John Macone, of MRWA, gave the 50 hikers the history of the hill named for ancestors of famed abolitionist and Quaker poet John Greenleaf Whittier.
The proximity of Whittier’s still-standing home to what was first called Witcher Hill lent easy access for the poet whose daily walks inspired several poems about the vistas seen from above.
Near the summit, hikers read excerpts from Whittier’s work and Macone showed a painting of the landscape by artist James Merritt Ives.
The 21-acre Whittier Hill Reservation was permanently preserved last year by Greenbelt with the successful completion of community-based fundraising campaign.
The trail, under a high canopy of a mixed hardwood forest, leads walkers to what was the city’s last unprotected ridge line. The trail traverses the ridge before reaching Woodsom Farm and 380 more acres of publicly-accessible open space.
Greenbelt is a co-sponsor of the Amesbury Trails Challenge, a month long challenge to see who can log the most miles on Amesbury's trails during August by biking, running or walking.
Greenbelt is grateful to several professional and staff photographers whose work is featured prominently within our website.
Thank you Jerry Monkman / ecophotography.com, Lynne Holton, Kindra Clineff, Adrian Scholes and John Raleigh.