This trail follows the roadbed of the Boston & Maine's old Reformatory Branch between Railroad Avenue in Bedford and Lowell Road in Concord. It is four miles long and passes through scenic wooded areas. This roadbed is unimproved (not surfaced with stone-dust or asphalt), so hybrid and mountain-type bicycles are suggested. Since the Reformatory Branch is not frequently traversed by cyclists, it tends to be a nice setting for a peaceful walk or jog.
Provided there has not been a lot of rain in the preceeding few days, the trail should be fine for most hybrid bikes. We can extend the ride by doing some of the Minuteman trail, too.
A journey on the Reformatory will offer several interesting sights. In Concord, the railroad bed passes alongside Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. (We understand that the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service does not permit bicycles within the refuge.) Although the last train rumbled over this branch line in 1962, keen observers will discover several railroad artifacts scattered along the route.
Originally, the Reformatory Branch extended another 2.5 miles to Reformatory Station in Concord, across the street from the existing State Prison on Route 2. But since the old B&M bridge across the Sudbury River is long gone, today's journey will end at Lowell Road near Concord Center. This is an ideal opportunity to make a side trip to Old North Bridge.