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Double Dip Dog Walks

Not Exactly the Pacific Crest Trail. . .

Since December, when the dark started to descend at 4:30, our dog walks have been leashed loop-around-the-neighborhood affairs. Boring. Short. Frustrating for both me and the dogs. Now that we have a little more daylight, I find myself craving longer walks. Walks where we can all blow off a little steam. And since the majority of our island’s walks are about 30 minutes, doubling up is sometimes necessary to get a good hike in. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not like you’re going to need a back pack or a change of socks, but the following “two-fers” will satisfy your wanderlust a little more fully.

Millbrook and Gardner Farm: At the end of the Millbrook trail (after you’ve passed the mysterious blue box and continued on the straight path at the end of the loop), you come upon a a dirt road. Cross over this road to a small (but clear) path through a copse of pines. This path leads you to the Gardner Farm trails.

State Forest (Polpis) and Milestone Loop: Start out at the Polpis State Forest (you practically need a four-wheel drive to get into this over-grown parking lot now). About 1/4 mile in on the walking path on your right, after crossing the gravel road next to the water tower, you will see a trail marker. Take this to hook up with the Milestone Loop. After enjoying these paths, head back to the straight and narrow Polpis trail, and follow it to the parking lot.

Serengeti and Milestone Bogs: As you start out on the Serengeti trail, stay to the right and follow a rutted grassy road down the hill. This leads you to Larsen Road, which runs along the bogs. There is ample parking at both of these walks, so start at either one.

Holdgate Trails and Milestone Loop: About mid-way through the Holdgate Trails loop on the left, there is a small path on with a marker that reads “Sheep Commons Connector.” Cross the Milestone Road here and go directly to the parking lot for the Milestone Loop trail. Milestone Road is a busy road, so leash up and look both ways!

Sanford Farm and Sanford Farm West: OK, to be honest, you need to walk along the Madaket bike path a bit to get from one to the other, heading west from Sanford Farm, but it’s not impossible. Just leash up.

Sanford Farm and Barrett Farm Road Trails: Take the Sanford Farm main trail all the way to the barn. You will see the ocean straight ahead and Hummock Pond on your left. Continue past the barn and bear right when you have a chance. Then take your first left. It is a big loop to the ocean and back to the barn, and at least six miles total!

For more details and maps for these walks, visit www.nantucketdogwalk.com.

A Dog’s Life, Nantucket, will explore the many dog (and other animal)-related issues on Nantucket. Stephanie Henke co-founded Nantucket Safe Harbor for Animals and created and manages Nantucket Dog Walk (www.nantucketdogwalk.com), a website dedicated to the many glorious dog walks on Nantucket.