Located in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Cape Cod Rail Trail is 22 miles (35 km) long and passes through a number of towns including Wellfleet, Harwich, Eastham, Dennis, Brewster and Orleans. It also connects to other trails such as the Old Colony Rail Trail at the Harwich bicycle rotary that also accesses the Hacker Wildlife Sanctuary before reaching Chatham where it ends. Old Colony Rail Trail is more than 6 miles (10 km) long.
At the rotary, information kiosks and a picnic area are also available. This spot has a beautiful landscape and also serves as the doorway to more of what Cape Cod Rail Trail has to offer. Cape Cod Rail Trail also connects to other 8 miles (13 km) of trails within Nickerson State Park, which features at the middle of this trail.
At the park, there are several activities you can engage in including biking, swimming, dog walking, picnicking and walking. If you do not wish to explore the trail further once you get to this point, you can enjoy the activities at the park, which are enough to make the rest of your day either as an individual or with family, friends or colleagues. Restrooms are also available at Nickerson State Park.
The western end of the trail at South Dennis trailhead is perhaps the busiest place along Cape Cod Rail Trail with ice cream merchants and picnic sites available within the first 4 miles (6 km) of this area. Moving on from this point, you will be able to access various towns and trails. Just before, Cape Cod Rail Trail comes to the spot where it ends; it will lead you past the end point of Nauset Bike Trail as it heads to Coast Guard Beach located in Cape Cod National Seashore.
If you wish to access other national seashore beaches, there are short roads along the trail to take your there. Cape Cod Rail Trail lies where Old Colony Railroad had established a rail line once and this was before it was incorporated to New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad. Later on it was merged into Penn Central in 1968 but went bankrupt by 1970.
What followed was that a portion of the line’s right-of-way was converted to the Cape Cod Rail Trail in the 1970s by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation. From its start point in South Dennis where it intersects with Massachusetts Route 134, to where it ends in South Wellfleet, Cape Cod Rail Trail, has a lot to offer to all visitors and just when you thought that you are finished once you get to the trail’s end, you are treated to an amazing view of the Atlantic ocean.
Taking a plunge into the Atlantic can be a great idea at this point at Maguire Landing Beach where you can also collect shells on the shores of the magnificent ocean. The way to get to the landing beach is by using LeCount Hollow Road and on the east; Cape Cod Rail Trail joins the East Coast Greenway. Going by its vastness, it is anticipated that this trail will cover an area of 2,900 miles (4,467 km) in the future.