Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area

Take a wild adventure through thousands of acres of remote forest at Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area in Middleborough. With 15 miles of old logging trails though mature pines, oaks, and white cedar swamps, this state-owned refuge is a protected ecosystem that draws hunters, hikers, and mountain bikers to explore.

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


Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area’s 3,000 acres of woods and freshwater swamps are an outstanding place for active outdoor explorers to discover. This is an excellent destination for hikers, mountain bikers, trail runners, and photographers who enjoy nature’s quiet solitude.

Wildlife management areas are open to all types of outdoor exploration, but they’re protected primarily for wildlife habitat. During hunting season, Rocky Gutter draws hunters looking for white-tailed deer, eastern coyote, wild turkey, and other native species. If you’re visiting Rocky Gutter during hunting season, make sure you (and your dog) wear blaze orange.


Fifteen miles of old logging trails wind through most of Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area. These roads create flat, easy paths through the mature pine forest. Because this is a large wildlife management area that is mostly maintained as wildlife habitat, it’s best for active outdoor explorers who feel comfortable using a compass. (Download trail map)

Starting at the parking area at France Street, head south to see active cranberry bogs at the end of the trail. If you hike north from the parking area, you’ll find yourself on a meandering network of woodland roads. These trails will take you all the way to Rocky Meadow Brook and cranberry bogs along Purchase Street. The landscape here can be wet and swampy, so we recommend you wear boots.

Habitats & Wildlife

Rocky Gutter’s vast upland forest habitat includes white pine, black gum, oak, and holly trees. Blueberry and greenbrier are also common, and serve as tasty snacks for the deer that live in this area. Dozens more woodland species can be found here too, including turkeys, coyotes, foxes, and raccoons.

Several small streams flow through Rocky Gutter, from Rocky Meadow Brook in the northeast to Double Brook in the southeast. Freshwater wetlands surround these streams, creating red maple and cedar swamps where frogs, turtles, birds, and water-loving mammals thrive. The Atlantic white cedar swamp at Rocky Gutter is home to the water-willow borer moth, a globally rare species that’s found only in Massachusetts.

Property Owned By

The Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife is responsible for the conservation – including restoration, protection, and management – of fish and wildlife resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the public.

Size: 3,178 acres
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Parking: Two small unpaved parking areas on either end of Rocky Gutter Street (Purchase Street and France Street); a third small unpaved parking area on Wildlife Area Access Road at Purchase Street and Faye Avenue
Trail Difficulty: Easy/Intermediate
Dogs: Yes (on leash)
Facilities: None
ADA Accessible: No

Please follow all posted rules and regulations at this property.

Address & Contact Information
Rocky Gutter Street
41.852700, -70.840895

Please follow all posted rules and regulations at this property.

Rocky Gutter Wildlife Management Area
Middleborough, MA
View larger map

Related Stories

13 scenic cranberry bog walks in the Buzzards Bay region

Nothing says fall in the Buzzards Bay region like the red of a cranberry bog, whether bright scarlet with berries or rusty with changing leaves. Check out one of these 13 spots and enjoy the view!

Full Story ›
How (and where) to go geocaching around Buzzards Bay

Looking for a new way to get outside and explore Buzzards Bay’s special places? Try geocaching: a modern-day version of treasure hunting.

Full Story ›
10 hikes over 5 miles to explore in southeastern Massachusetts

If you think you need to travel far away to go for a long hike, think again! The Buzzards Bay region is home to many trails that stretch for miles.

Full Story ›

Upcoming Events Near Here

Falmouth Road Race
Sun, August 18
Woods Hole to Falmouth Heights,
Buzzards Bay Watershed Ride
Sun, October 06
Sakonnnet Point to Woods Hole,
Buzzards Bay Coalition Golf Tournament
Fri, October 18
12:30PM - 7:00PM
The Bay Club,

Nearby Places To Go

Myles Standish State Forest

With over 12,000 acres to hike, bike, fish, camp, and hunt, you'll never run out of ways to have fun at Myles Standish in Carver.

Douglas S. Westgate Conservation Area

If you want to explore a classic Wareham landscape, Westgate Conservation Area is an ideal spot.

Halfway Pond Conservation Area

Discover Plymouth’s peaceful ponds and woodlands by foot or canoe at Halfway Pond Conservation Area.

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 ›