Silvio O. Conte National Fish & Wildlife Refugee – Fort River Division (Hadley, MA)

Date Of Visit: September 7, 2016

Location: 69 Moody Bridge Rd, Hadley, MA

Hours: Open everyday, sunrise until sunset

Cost: Free

Parking: There is a lot at the entrance of the trail for about 20-30 cars

Dog Friendly: Yes

Handicap Accessible: Yes

Highlights: wildlife, easy trail, flowers

Web Site: Sylvio O. Conte National Fish & Wildlife Refuge


Named after Silvio Ottavio Conte, a 16 term Republican member of the U.S. House of Reprentatives from Pittsfield, MA, the Silvio O. Conte National Fish & Wildlife Refuge is  and easy 1.1 mile trail dotted with trees, flowers and the occasional bird.

Broken into 9 divisions and 9 units across New England, the Sylvio O. Conte parks feature a variety of parks in Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut and New Hampshire.

I chose to visit the Fort River Division in Hadley, Massachusetts during the week of the Labor holiday.  So, the photos are not an accurate display of what the refuge looks like now.  It is undoubtedly even more beautiful with all of the foliage this time of the year.

The refuge has mostly flat, well groomed trails with some raised platform walkways.

There are benches and lookouts along the way.

The views from the lookouts and on the trails are very pretty.

The flowers, plants and trees at the Sylvio O. Conte trail are also very pretty.

Although it was only the early part of September, I saw the signs of fall on the trail.  Leaves covered parts of the trail and some of the leaves appeared to be turning color already.

As the name indicates, the Fort River runs through a portion of the trail.


The winding trails are very charming.  They make you wonder what could be around the next corner.  Even though it is only slightly more than a mile in length, the trail does provide a lot of surprises.  One of the surprises you may find on the trail is wildlife.  Deer, bobcats and coyote are said to populate the area.  But, I didn’t see any of them during my visit.  Oh, and then there are birds.  There are lots of birds at Sylvio O. Conte trail.  I photographed a few of them.

While it’s certainly not a challenging trail and you’re not likely to find too much wildlife or other surprises, I would still recommend this trail to anyone looking for a casual walk with some pretty scenery.

About New England Nomad

Hi I'm Wayne. Welcome to my blog. I am a true New Englander through and through. I love everything about New England. I especially love discovering new places in New England and sharing my experiences with everyone. I tend to focus on the more unique and lesser known places and things in New England on my blog. Oh yeah, and I love dogs. I always try to include at least one dog in each of my blog posts. I discovered my love of photography a couple of years ago. I know, I got a late start. Now, I photograph anything that seems out of the ordinary, interesting, beautiful and/or unique. And I have noticed how every person, place or thing I photograph has a story behind it or him or her. I don't just photograph things or people or animals. I try to get their background, history or as much information as possible to give the subject more context and meaning. It's interesting how one simple photograph can evoke so much. I am currently using a Nikon D3200 "beginner's camera." Even though there are better cameras on the market, and I will upgrade some time, I love how it functions (usually) and it has served me well. The great thing about my blog is you don't have to be from New England, or even like New England to like my blog (although I've never met anyone who doesn't). All you have to like is to see and read about new or interesting places and things. Hopefully, you'll join me on my many adventures in New England! View all posts by New England Nomad

2 responses to “Silvio O. Conte National Fish & Wildlife Refugee – Fort River Division (Hadley, MA)

  • Tina Williams

    This looks great for my family, since my daughter has a disability and we push her along in a stroller chair. It’s hard to find trails that we can take her on that’s not too difficult. And it’s in my neck of the woods! Thanks for pointing it out, and the great photos.

    Liked by 1 person

    • New England Nomad

      Thank you, Tina! Your comment made me think of a new category to add for if a place is handicap accessible. I have noticed a few people commenting on this very important feature. I think it’s a good idea so people will know before they go. I think you and your daughter will have a wonderful time. I especially like the lookout areas. I hope you have a great time there!

      Liked by 1 person

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