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Experience springtime at the Doug Rayner Wildlife Refuge on a free guided walk. The Refuge is located on Nockum Hill on a peninsula extending into the Barrington River and Hundred Acre Cove estuary. Owned by the Town of Barrington, the Refuge’s public hiking trails traverse 82 acres of field, forest and shoreline.


The walk will be led Peter McCalmont, Chairman of the Doug Rayner Wildlife Refuge Management Committee, and Charlie Brown, retired DEM wildlife biologist, Co-Manager of the Refuge and Co-Chair of the Management Committee. The walk is scheduled for Friday, May 17, at 10 am (rain date, Wednesday, May 22, 10 am).

Nockum Hill has figured prominently in Barrington’s history. Once home to the Pokanoket people, it is the site of the first Baptist meetinghouse in the New World. Legend has it that the first shots of King Philip’s War were fired nearby.

The terrain is mostly gentle but may be wet in places, with moderate inclines. Dress for the weather and wear sturdy shoes or boots. The walk will last about an hour and a half. All ages are welcome.

The town acquired the land in the 1960s and designated it as a wildlife refuge in 1994. The Barrington Land Conservation Trust was granted a conservation easement on the property in 2005 to ensure the property remains protected in perpetuity. This sensitive land is managed by the Doug Rayner Management Committee in collaboration with the Land Trust.

In 2000, the Refuge was named after ardent naturalist Doug Rayner, a member of the Barrington Conservation Commission and a board member of the Barrington Land Conservation Trust.

Doug was instrumental in protecting the marshes and upland buffers of the Palmer and Barrington Rivers, Nockum Hill and Hundred Acre Cove, and was active in protecting endangered species and their habitats.

The Barrington Land Conservation Trust has preserved approximately 300 acres of open space in perpetuity for the benefit of the public.

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