Hike through history on a dog friendly walk at King Philip's Hill, in Northfield, MA. During the winter of 1675/6 the Wampanoag chief, Metacomet, called "King Philip" by the colonists, used this bluff overlooking the Connecticut River for his encampment during King Philip's War. Today the remnants of the trenches and bank fortifications are still visible in the forested underbrush. Maintained by the town of Northfield, King Philip's Hill is an easy 0.6 mile hike, with informational signs. However, if you're expecting to see the same views from this lookout post as Metacomet, you won't. This once open view with old growth trees is now densely wooded with new growth and underbrush, blocking the views of the river and landscape below. Yet King Philip's Hill is a fascinating place to visit. It is an unique experience to stand on this tranquil hill and envision the Native American encampment here 300 years ago. According to the signage, they used the trenches abandoned by the colonists who had evacuated the area following the attack on nearby Deerfield. However, it is also theorized that Native Americans began using this area much earlier sometime between 6,000 and 10,000 years ago.
Dogs are allowed. Parking for one car is available a few yards from the trailhead at the historic roadside marker. Although the trenches were visible on the summer day we visited, our guess is they would be best viewed in the spring and fall when the vegetation isn't so dense. I had trouble photographing them with their thick covering of ferns. Also when we visited, some of the informational signs were knocked over.