DIRECTIONS to Northern Pond: Drive east on Route 139 from the junction of Routes 141 and 139 and take the first left onto the Monroe Road. One mile farther on, turn left onto Dahlia Farm Road and in 1.5 miles watch for a parking area on the left. A sign and a trail map are posted at this parking area. Maps are also available at the Monroe Town Hall. Please note that the trails are for hiking, snowshoeing, and skiing only. Motorized vehicles and bicycles are not allowed on the trails. Dogs are welcome but please keep them on leash and clean up after them. Thank you for helping to keep Northern Pond pristine and beautiful!
Not far into the woods off Dahlia Farm Road in Monroe, Northern Pond lies surrounded by wetlands and a diverse forest of hemlock, balsam fir, pine, spruce, birch, poplar, oak, and maple. Fed and drained by Thurlow Brook, the pond and surrounding woods and wetlands create habitat for many plants, birds and animals. Look for carnivorous sundew and pitcher plants by canoe or kayak in the summer and birdwatching is rewarding any time of year. Come to enjoy the views and the peaceful quiet.
The pond has been a place for fishing, summer and winter, for many years. Generations of children, perhaps first brought to the pond on family picnics, have spent their free hours there, fishing, finding frogs and beaver dams, watching birds, and creating snow creatures.
In 2005, after years of ground work, the citizens of Monroe voted to put Northern Pond and about 160 acres of the town-owned woodland and marsh surrounding it into a “forever wild” conservation easement as the Northern Pond Natural Area.
Under the direction of the Monroe Conservation Commission, many people continue to work to maintain the hiking trails, bog walks, and canoe launch, as well as marking the easement boundary lines. The conservation easement is held by the Landmark Heritage Trust, which counts a number of Monroe residents as members. Regardless of future changes, Northern Pond will remain forever wild and accessible to the public.
Pausing while hiking or paddling at Northern Pond Natural Area, one feels far from human habitation. As in any wilderness area, we follow the rule of pack in, pack out; please leave no trace of your visit behind.
Bring yourself, your snack and water, take home your memories and photos. One Monroe resident’s comment after her first visit – “It’s the jewel of Monroe.”
For information and a trail map of Basin Pond (also located in Monroe), click here.