North Central Pathway

Trail Map

Description Suggest an Edit

The North Central Pathway will one day stretch 16 miles between the cities of Winchendon and Gardner in northern Massachusetts, primarily along a former railroad right-of-way. Three open sections currently offer just over 11 miles of paved, off-road trail.

The northernmost section travels across Winchendon from Summer Street to N. Ashburnham Road, connecting residents to Whitney Pond and the Clark Memorial Community Center.

Southeast of Winchendon, the trail picks up again and travels from Old Gardner Road through dense woodlands to Gardner's north end near the Perley Brook Reservoir.

Another section of trail winds through a picturesque part of Gardner. This section begins at Stone Street and runs past Mount Wachusett Community College and Heywood Hospital. The trail splits just north of the hospital with one fork traveling to the Veterans Memorial Skating Rink on the eastern shore of Crystal Lake, and the other branch traveling past Gardner Middle and High schools and ending near Dunn State Park.

Parking and Trail Access

In Winchendon, parking can be found at the Clark Memorial Community Center (155 Central Street), as well as at the intersection of Glenallen Street and Route 12 on the eastern side.

In Gardner, a parking lot is available off Green Street and at Veterans Memorial Skating Rink (45 Veterans Drive) at the south end of the trail.


great shape for the shape it's in

   September, 2016 by fbmail

Much work has gone into it and it's great to see. Only a few short sections to go until it's complete. Ignore the fools who say it's not worth it. They are lightweights. Start with the Winchendon end. Also, you North Central Pathway people, don't rest more

Rail Trail

   July, 2016 by katiequist

Enjoyed running with a double jogger- a nice reprieve from the pot holes/frost heaves of typical New England roads! read more

Not worth it

   June, 2016 by frozenbiker

Starting in Gardner, the trail begins in the rear parking lot of the Ice Rink. The trail itself does not last very long, then it is on-road only. The road surface becomes a bit nasty after passing the college. I did not ride the separate portion which more