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Smithfield, RI Weather

Pull Up a Rock and Sit for a While

By John Salois

There are plenty of places in town we all know like the ice rink, the High School Track, Whipple Field, McCabe courts and many others. We know them because that’s where the people go. They are the places we get familiar with and see on our drives through town.

There are other places too. Places you won’t see as you drive through town. Places with no names, no signs and absent of crowds or traffic. They are the rocks in town I like to visit. Some of these rocks seem to have been tailor made by nature for sitting. I will tell you about a few and I encourage you to visit them.

Walk past the softball fields at Whipple Field to the last one and just behind the backstop there is a large rock. It’s is a nice shaded and quiet place on the Woonnasquatucket River where you can listen to the water cascade over some exposed stones. On occasion there will be ball players on the field and the sound of ball gloves popping as they play catch.

Mercer Lookout is located off Mountaindale Road. Take Carltons Way to the end of the cul-de-sac and you will find the parking space and sign for the trail. Follow the blue markers up a hill and be on the lookout for the part of trail that bends to the right and changes to a mostly stone path going uphill, you will see a large fireplace and chimney, once you arrive you will be able to see the City of Providence from the lookout point. Just in front of some berry bushes there is a chair like stone to sit on and enjoy the view. If it is early morning and sunrise you will be able to see the sun burning over the trees on your left. Follow the path in the direction of the sun and you will arrive at a viewing point overlooking 295 where you can take in the view of the sunrise.

Georgiaville Pond is one of my favorite places in town. Walk past the beach sand and across the grass that covers the dam all the way to the spillway and you will find a large flat top rock. This is an ideal spot to watch a sunset and listen to the water pour over the spillway into the rock gorge. It’s a nice place in the morning too and if you walk a little farther you can climb down and sit along the river. If the water level is high the volume of the rushing water is loud and if not, it is calm and soothing.

Stillwater Trail located on Farnum Pike is a pleasant and easy walk. It’s all flat and there are many things to see off the path including the arches of the 116 overpasses, a waterfall and a grand view of the Stillwater Pond. If you look close on your left as you near the end of the trail just before you get to Capron Road there is a small path that leads to a nice little cleared space. The water moves pleasantly by here and its’s an ideal spot to sit and escape.

Stump Pond is commonly seen as you pass through town on Pleasant View Avenue. If you happen to be in the area on a clear night take a left onto Farnum Pike and park to the lot where the dam is. This is an outstanding place for star gazing. There are no benches so bring a blanket or have a seat on one of the stones along the walkway.

I hope this short article inspires you to take some time and visit these little gems in our town, pull up a rock and sit for a while. To see pictures of these spaces, visit my Instagram page. https://www.instagram.com/sincerescenery/