Gloucester, Massachusetts

Total Acres: 53

Year Conserved: 1979


Property Description

This 53-acre reservation juts out at a bend in the Little River where it joins the Annisquam, which runs into the sea from the inland side of Gloucester. Located in the historic heart of salt water farming country, the property combines a colonial history with exceptional ecology. 

Stoney Cove has been a crossroads connecting West Gloucester to Gloucester since the earliest colonial days. West Gloucester colonists had to walk across the marsh, then row across the Annisquam River, to attend compulsory church services on the Green near the site of the present day Chester Grant Circle. In 1694, an initial public route was established by means of a ferry over the river and a causeway built over the marsh to the mainland near the head of Stoney Cove. The current location of Route 128 is superimposed over the old causeway in the immediate Stoney Cove area.

There's a geocache here! Learn more here.

Special Features:

The Stoney Cove and Susan’s Point are a great place to study successional stages of a forest. It generally takes 100 years for a field to grow to a mature forest. The stages it growth that take place evolve in orderly progression, dictated by soils, climate, fire and human activity. Pasture gives way to pioneer tree growth of poplars and junipers that eventually are shaded over by emerging hickory, oak and maple. The fresh water marsh is slowly filling and turning to upland.  This reservation has not yet reached the half-way point in its evolution into forest land.

The remaining pier sees constant use, with people fishing, bird watching, picnicking and enjoying the lovely views of salt marsh with the city of Gloucester in the distance. Clammers continue to work the tidal flats of the Little River and sailors ply her mid-channel.



Park in the pullout off Route 128 just before the stone pier.

Parking GPS Location
Latitude: 42.625613
Longitude: -70.704964



From the northbound side of Route 128 in Gloucester
Pass Exit 13. Parking is 0.2 miles ahead on the right, directly off the highway, just before stone pier. Space for 3-4 cars.


Stoney Cove & Presson Point Reservation

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  • Stoney Cove
  • Great Blue Heron
  • Stoney Cove signage
  • Stoney Cove


Route 128, Gloucester

Use Type



  • Birding
  • Canoeing
  • Dog Walking
  • Fishing
  • Hiking
  • Kayaking
  • Nature Study
  • Wildlife Photography
  • X-C Skiing


  • Wooded Upland
  • Marsh
  • Historic