Grater Woods


The latest Trail Map*

The Town Council accepted the Stewardship Plan. If you have a question on the plan, please don't hesitate to use our email address.

The Trails Section has been broken out so you can print it and take it along with you on your use of the property. Take a moment and note what is approved for each section of the trails.

*Note: The trail map is designed to be a tri- fold. This means you should try to print the map double sided and then fold it so that the map is in the middle and each side is folded in over the map. Follow the link to see what a tri-fold looks like.

Click to see more photos of Grater Woods.

Property Description:

Charles Edwin Grater, born 28 May 1827, purchased the land known today as the Grater homestead on South Grater Road in the mid-1800's. Today, the Grater Woods Forest is a contiguous 480 acre parcel of property formed through land acquisitions by the Merrimack Conservation Commission. The property is comprised of several parcels inclusive of a 32 acre easement of protected open space owned by the Merrimack School District. Due to the forests size, woodland diversity, quantity of wetlands, and impact on wildlife and water resources, the Grater Woods Forest is listed as a top priority for conservation in the 2002 Town of Merrimack Master Plan.

Much of the property was cleared for pasture in previous centuries and has been logged several times. Many old logging roads and newly managed trails form the basis of today's trail network used by hikers, bikers, runners, hunters, snowmobilers, horseback riders, skiers, ATVers and bird watchers. The trail network covers the majority of the property and continues to expand. The Grater Woods Forest now serves as an important habitat for wildlife as well as providing recreational benefits to town residents.

The forest consists of mixed hardwood and softwood trees between 20-60 years of age. The property also includes a variety of streams, ponds, swamps and numerous wetlands totaling approximately 100 acres. The varied terrain, habitat, and large areas of undisturbed open space have encouraged a wide variety of wildlife to thrive on the property. Contained within this parcel are habitats for beaver, fisher, deer, moose and turkey as well as unique features such as vernal pools, beaver ponds and glacial erratics. The Grater Woods Forest, together with other forests in the region, provides a wildlife corridor (greenway) that allows animals to freely migrate in and out of the forest.

Helpful Info


Madeline Bennet Drive


42° 52'10.59" -71° 32'41.98"

Click to Explore GIS

Permitted Activities:

Hiking, hunting, biking, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, Class I E-Bikes and horseback riding.

Prohibited Activities:

Not Permitted on the School District property: Hunting, discharge of air-powered or spring-powered guns, any type of bow, or any firearm for any purpose, motorized and OHRV vehicles.

Not Permitted anywhere on Grater Woods: Fires, camping, Class 2 and Class 3 E-Bikes, discharge of air-powered, or spring-powered guns, any bows, or any type of firearms for the purpose of target shooting.

Hours of Use:

There are no hours restrictions on this property except for you are not encouraged to park and access the property from the Middle School parking lot when school is in session. If you choose to do that, you should check in with the school or just one of our other access points and parking.