Department of Natural Resources Conservation at UMass-Amherst has responsibility for managing the 755-acre Mt. Toby Demonstration forest for teaching, research and demonstration. We also try to coordinate with recreational users of the Forest, as well as the Mass. DCR (who operate the fire tower at the summit), and other organizations. The Forest is topographically diverse. To the south are three hills, the highest being Mount Toby (1269 feet). Slopes are steep with small cliffs and ledges to the east and west. There is a deep valley between two of the hills – Roaring Mountain to the south and Ox Hill to the north – with a brook that drops in a waterfall near the eastern border of the Forest. Most, but not all of it, has been logged more than once, but some areas are so inaccessible that they were never logged. Today, UMass students and faculty use the forest for teaching, field exercises, and forestry research activities. Mount Toby is used heavily by the general public for a variety of recreational activities. These are allowed so long as they conform with the University Trustees guidelines for use of the Forest and do not interfere with teaching and research activities.
Mt. Toby management plan – PDF
Directions to the UMass Mt. Toby Forest:
From the intersection of Routes 116 and 47 in Sunderland, Mass, follow Rt 47 north to the town line with Montague. Just after the town line sign, turn right onto reservation Rd. The gate, parking area and kiosk are 1/2 mile on the right. Access to Cranberry pond is another 1/2 mile on the right.
Updated: September 19, 2011