Our Forest Properties

Our department is fortunate to have responsibility for stewardship of five forest properties totaling over 2000 acres:

We view the forests as living laboratories; living endowments; and places for students, faculty, and alumni to work together to practice responsible stewardship. For example, Emeritus Professor Bill Wilson worked with students for the last two summers to complete a second 10-year re-measurement of nearly 200 systematically arranged plots on Mt. Toby and Cadwell to document 20 years of change in forest structure and composition – a huge wealth of information is available from these data. We also have a library of GIS coverages available for the forests.

Using the Forest Properties

The UMass Board of Trustees granted responsibility for management and oversight of the forests to the Department of Environmental Conservation. Anyone wishing to use any of the University forests for research or education should complete and return an application to use the forest to the Department of Environmental Conservation prior to any research or demonstration activity. Failure to do so may compromise ongoing research and will mean removal of any field equipment, marks or other items left on the site.

Please follow these rules and regulations while using the forests:

  • Stay on roads and trails
  • Respect adjacent private landowners’ property rights. UMass boundaries are marked in red paint.
  • No unauthorized vehicles are allowed (including ORVs and snowmobiles)
  • No open fires
  • No overnight camping
  • Keep dogs on leashes

Contact the Department of Environmental Conservation (413) 545-2665 for more information.

In case of an emergency, call 911 or contact the UMass police at (413) 545-2121.