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Towns in the Shawsheen River Watershed:

  • Andover

  • Bedford

  • Billerica

  • Lawrence

  • Tewksbury

  • Wilmington

Major Tributaries:

  • Elm Brook

  • Case Brook

  • Heath Brook

  • Jones Brook

  • Roger's Brook

  • Spring Brook

  • Strongwater Brook

  • Sutton Brook

  • Vine Brook

  • Web Brook​

What's happening in the Shawsheen River watershed? Click here to find out! 

Organizations working in the Hoosic River Watershed​

Shawsheen River Watershed Association

Learn More

Environmental Concerns for the Shawsheen River


Wastewater discharge from neighboring communities poses threats to the Shawsheen River. Organizations, such as the Shawsheen River Watershed Association and the Merrimack River Watershed Council, are focusing on reducing nutrient levels that result from the dischagre.




Additional Facts


History The Shawsheen River Stream Team was founded in the early 1970s to protect the river from contamination from the Hanscom Air Force Base property. This toxic runoff threated aquatic habitat and the wildlife it supports in the watershed. Did you know? The name Shawsheen means "serpent" and originates form a Native American legend.





Shawsheen River Activities
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Swimming
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Walk, Hike, Bike
Paddling
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Boating & Sailing
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Fishing
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Swimming

 

Swimming locations in the watershed:

  • Pomps Pond (Andover)

    • Small fee for swimming, but is easily accessible. ​

    • Offers swim lessons

  • Stiles Pond (Boxford)

    • ​Offers Red Cross certified swim lessons ($100 per swimmer for members or $110 per swimmer for non-members)

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Walk, Hike, Bike

 

Walking, hiking, and biking locations:

  • Shawsheen River Trail (North Andover)

    • Located at 29 Loring Street in North Andover, MA. 

    • ~30 minute walk

  • Shawsheen River Greenway (Andover)

    • Click here for a map of trails and nearby parking locations ​

  • Shawsheen Overlook (Tewksbury)

    • 9.55 acres o​f land with wildlife observation areas, a kayak launch, and fishing access 

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Paddling

 

Paddling locations in the watershed:

  • Dale Street (Andover) running from the Ballardvale dam at Dale St. downstream to Central St at the Abbot Bridge Drive canoe launch. This paddling spot is perfect for families! 

    • Click here for a map.

    • Click here for more information. ​

  • Shawsheen Pines (Andover) has a canoe launch off of Lowell Junction Road, with the best paddling in along the river in Andover above the Ballardvale dam. This river trail is 1.8 miles (~1 hour downstream) to Andover Street and runs through many protected, natural areas. Also a great family friendly paddle location! 

    • Click here for information on canoe/kayak rentals. ​

  • Fosters Pond (Andover) is privately own through the Fosters Pond Association, but is open to the public. Fosters Pond is a beautiful spot for paddling and boating. 

    • Click here for a list of rules to help protect Fosters Pond. ​

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Boating & Sailing

 

Please contact us with any information about boating the Shawsheen River.

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Fishing

 

Fishing the Shawsheen River is allowed after May (trout hatcheries occur April to May). The "Horn Bridge" located on Central Street and the Ballardvale Millpond. 

Fish species you can find in the river:

  • Bluegill

  • Brook Trout

  • Brown Bullhead

  • Brown Trout

  • Calico Bass (Black Crappie)

  • Chain Pickerel

  • Largemouth Bass

  • Pumpkinseed 

  • Rainbow Trout

  • Smallmouth Bass

  • Yellow Perch​