Breivogel Ponds Conservation Area

Hike, picnic, or bird watch among some of the Cape’s most unusual habitats at Breivogel Ponds Conservation Area in Falmouth. Rare sandy grasslands, a freshwater pond, pine forest and springtime vernal pools sit side-by-side at this fascinating town-owned property.

Discover Buzzards Bay Sponsored By primary sponsor logo
Discover Buzzards Bay Sponsored By

Features

A bird box overlooking a flooded vernal pool at Breivogel Ponds Conservation Area in Falmouth

Bird boxes overlook the vernal pools, which on rainy years can combine to form one large pond.

A desert on Cape Cod? Don’t be fooled – the broad expanse of sand you see at Breivogel Ponds Conservation Area is actually full of life for you to explore. This former gravel mine is being restored to rare habitat known as sandplain grasslands. These broad plains are a fantastic place to sit with a picnic and watch for the many birds that flock to this space. Walkers, hikers, and cross-country skiers will find ample space to wander across the sand and on the trails through the surrounding forest.

If you’re seeking water views, head down to the two man-made freshwater ponds on the east side of the property. The pond’s cool, shallow waters are a favorite spot for dogs to splash around, as well as a good place to dip your feet after a hike on a warm day. In the spring, the shallow depressions south of these ponds become vernal pools. Here, you can view floating egg masses from fascinating amphibian species.

Trails

A mile and a half of trails begin at the Breivogel Ponds parking lot on Blacksmith Shop Road. After crossing over a power line corridor and through an old gate, the trail splits to form a loop. This mile-long loop passes through the center of the sandplain grasslands, through the woods around the two ponds, and along the edge of a bluff with great views of the vernal pools. Side paths lead off this trail down to the vernal pools and to the edge of the freshwater ponds. (This property does not yet have a map for visitors, so please keep to established trails.)

If you’d like to extend your walk, continue onto a half-mile loop that diverts from the first trail and into the surrounding pine and oak woodlands. You can enter this loop from the north side of the sandplain grasslands, or by turning off of the woodland trail at its northeast corner.

Habitats & Wildlife

Two fascinating habitats sit right next to each other at this unique conservation area. Sandplain grasslands are among the rarest habitats in the world. They only occur naturally where salt spray from the ocean prevents them from returning to woodlands. Within these sandy fields you’ll find many uncommon plants and insects, as well as birds that nest or overwinter in grasslands. Barn and tree swallows are a particular favorite here as they swoop and twirl playfully over the sand. Keep an eye out for American kestrel — the smallest falcon in North America — around the nest boxes installed to attract these tiny raptors.

Just south of the sandplain grasslands, The 300 Committee created five shallow depressions that fill with water in the spring, forming temporary vernal pools. These pools are important habitat where amphibians like spotted salamanders and rare spadefoot toads lay their eggs. Because vernal pools are very delicate, please keep away from their edges and keep dogs outside of the fenced area.

Property Owned By
Details
Size: 68 acres
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Parking: Medium-sized unpaved parking area on Blacksmith Shop Road
Trail Difficulty: Easy
Dogs: Yes (on leash)
Facilities: None
ADA Accessible: No

Please follow all posted rules and regulations at this property.

Address & Contact Information
588 Blacksmith Shop Rd.
Falmouth, MA 02536
41.606162, -70.597265
Town of Falmouth Conservation Department: (508) 495-7445
The 300 Committee: (508) 540-0876
Email: saveland@300committee.org

Please follow all posted rules and regulations at this property.

Breivogel Ponds Conservation Area
Falmouth, MA
View larger map

Related Stories

31st Annual Meeting recognizes three exceptional Buzzards Bay Guardians

At our 31st Annual Meeting in Westport on May 21, the Coalition presented Michael Deland, Michael Gagne, and Wendy Northcross with Buzzards Bay Guardian Awards for their outstanding work to protect and restore the Bay.

Full Story ›
25 local fishing charters to get you out on Buzzards Bay

Chartering a boat gives you an opportunity to fish Buzzards Bay's deeper waters with the guidance of experienced captains.

Full Story ›
10 reasons why 2018 was another great year for Buzzards Bay

Although so much remains to be done to protect and restore the Bay’s health, I’m proud to share with you some of our greatest accomplishments from 2018.

Full Story ›

Upcoming Events Near Here

Cape Cod Canal Boating & Water Safety Day
Sat, June 29
10:00AM - 2:00PM
Cape Cod Canal Visitor Center,
Bourne
Falmouth Road Race
Sun, August 18
Woods Hole to Falmouth Heights,
Falmouth
Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride
Sun, October 06
Sakonnet Point, RI to Woods Hole,
Falmouth

Nearby Places To Go

Frances A. Crane Wildlife Management Area

The wildlife-rich forests and fields of East Falmouth's Frances A. Crane welcome hunters, hikers, bikers, and equestrians alike.

Long Pond & Falmouth Town Forest

Take a challenging hike up and down rocky hills within rich protected forest in Falmouth's Long Pond & Falmouth Town Forest.

Mock Moraine Trails & Eaton Preserve

Hike or bike up and down wooded hills scattered with boulders at Mock Moraine and Eaton Preserve in West Falmouth.

Current Issues

Land Conservation

Conserving land is one of the most important ways to protect clean water in Buzzards Bay. Since 1998, the Coalition has forever preserved more than 7,000 acres of land across our region.

Read More ›