As I mentioned in my recent post on Opacum Woods, I had the pleasure of a 3-day weekend camping trip with my son. I was looking somewhat locally to find a new place to camp. The last place we went on our annual father-son camping trip was a place with lots of amenities for kids (paddle boats, large playground, game room, pool, etc.), however all of the sites were tightly packed and not that private, and the place was overloaded with RVs.
I am not an RV camper. I like a tent, surrounded by lots of trees and woods. I really do not want to even know that another camper is near me. When camping with a 6 year old, he’s not quite ready to really rough it, such as on a backpacking trip, so we have to make due with what we’ve got at public campgrounds, and not nestled away in the woods miles from civilization… just yet.
So, I did some searching, and found Wells State Park. Located in Sturbridge, MA, about an hour away from me, and a short drive from Worcester south on Interstate 90 (Mass Pike). If you are from the area, you no doubt are familiar with Sturbridge because of Old Sturbridge Village (OSV) – whether you’ve been there on a school trip, or know someone who has.
OSV is a living museum of what life was like between 1790-1840 here in New England. They have transplanted buildings from all over New England from that time period, as well has have over 50,000 artifacts from the same era. Workers there dress as they would back in that time, as well as show off how people worked – there is a tin shop, shoe shop, etc.
Anyways, back to the park! Wells State Park was probably one of the best (new to me) campgrounds I have been to in a long time. Our site (#27) had a horseshoe dirt drive in, surrounded by woods, and had a few trails leading off into the woods. There were campsites on either side of us, but none right across the way, so, all we saw were trees.
Wells State Park also has a few geocaches, which my son and I found. It also has a beach on Walker Pond, which you can swim, canoe, boat, etc… and a few miles of trails.
One of the trails, the trail to Carpenters Rock, offers an amazing view of the area. There is also a VERY cleverly hidden geocache there. The image below is from the top of Carpenter’s Rock.
Also while up on Carpenter’s Rock, searching for that the Cliff’s Micro Geocache, we came across a millipede… I’ve been in the woods for most of my life, and have never seen one in the wild in person.
We had a great weekend in and around Wells State Park, and I cannot wait to go back there again.
- Hunting is allowed and is apparently popular in this park, so, be careful and wear blaze orange during hunting season!
- The weekend before, a bear was seen in the park… keep your food away from your campsite and your tent.
Some resources on the park and other activities in the area can be found below…
- Wells State Park (campground map, trail guide, park information)
- Geocaches in and near the park
- Opacum Woods (trails, wildlife, geocaches)
- Sturbridge Graphite Mine (a/k/a Tantiusques Mine, Winthrop Lead Mine)
- Old Sturbridge Village
- Mass Outdoor Expo