Return to Joe’s Rock


Joe’s Rock, Wrentham, MA

Last month I had an unfortunate encounter with an overenthusiastic farm dog, all while standing too close to the edge of the farm porch. The resulting fall has kept me homebound the past month, icing my hip, lower back, ribs, and shoulders as I waited for my body to heal. Gratefully, I have no broken bones, but  walking has been quite painful.

Strangely, walking on level floors has been more painful than climbing stairs. Yesterday, as the sun rose and the sky filled with blue, I thought, why not climb straight up Joe’s Rock? It’s nearby, a short drive, promises a great view once I get there, and climbing down stairs isn’t so bad, so coming back downhill should be ok as well, right?


Eroded waterbars on the way up to Joe’s Rock, the view

Getting up to Joe’s Rock was, indeed, mostly fine, although for the many folks who come to my website looking for information about this conservation property in Wrentham, I must warn that it really is NOT an easy walk. The trail is filled with rocks.


Rocks, flowing water on the path to the view

The waterbars up the slope are deeply eroded, and in spring the trail is filled with a trickling stream finding its way down the hill.


And…a large tree trunk blocks the path, another challenge

For several years a large tree trunk barred the path near the top. The choice was either to climb over or under the trunk. That tree has collapsed, but now there is another large tree across the path at the same point that makes getting up the path challenging. I managed to sit on the tree trunk and pivot to the other side to get past this point and up to where there is a view.


The pond below the rock, and the view

And yes, the view–because it was such a clear morning, we were able to see for miles. Mostly over the state line into Cumberland, RI, rolling hills were in the distance, a truly pretty spot.


Yup, I really did get to the top. But the getting down…

But what goes up must come down. My husband, who has been caretaking me throughout the healing of this injury, supported me on my way down. My walking sticks helped, but increasing pain in my hip made it harder and harder to walk. I was grateful that this is a rather small property, and the hill is really not that big of a climb. Once down, we headed right home and I spent the rest of the day on ice.

But I’m already thinking about my next walk. For there will be more. Cassandra says she may be able to meet me for an easy walk along the bike path nearby in Bellingham. Other friends are in the queue for additional walks. For the moment I’m feeling grateful for having legs that can carry me, with or without pain, from one spot to another. We really don’t know what any day will bring. But for now I know, if I could climb to the top of Joe’s Rock once, I can do it again!


Marjorie Turner Hollman is a writer who loves the outdoors, and is the author of Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd editionMore Easy Walks in Massachusetts, 2nd editionEasy Walks and Paddles in the Ten Mile River Watershed, and Finding Easy Walks Wherever You Are. Her memoir, the backstory of Easy Walks, is My Liturgy of Easy Walks: Reclaiming hope in a world turned upside down.


Filed under Blog posts--Easy Walks

2 responses to “Return to Joe’s Rock

  1. Your resilience and determination are truly inspiring. Onward and upward!

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