Description - For year round outdoor recreation, visit Hodges Village Dam. US Army Corps of Engineers Park Rangers are available to assist you during your visit. There are over 15 miles of trails available at Hodges Village Dam for many different activities. The blue blazed trails and the Midstate Trail (yellow triangles) on both the east and west sides of French river are for non-motorized use (hiking, nature study, mountain biking, cross country skiing, and horseback riding). On the west side of the French River, dirt bikes and snowmobiles are allowed on the designated off-road vehicle (ORV) trails only (orange blazed).
Hodges Village Dam is available for use by students and educators for environmental education.
The US Army Corps of Engineers manages the natural resources at Hodges Village Dam for multiple uses: flood control, wildlife habitat, forest production, watershed protection, and outdoor recreation.
- Almost 1,200 acres of land make up the natural environment at Hodges Village Dam. On the west side of the French River are upland hardwoods, red oak, white oak and hickory.
The east side of Hodges Village Dam supports an Atlantic White Cedar swamp and numerous shrub swamps and forested wetlands. Red maple, alder, birch and other common wetland plants are found in the widespread wetlands. Deer, rabbits, ducks, geese, raccoons, fox, turkey, and a variety of songbirds are some the wildlife inhabiting these natural areas.
Recreation - The outdoor enthusiast can hunt, fish and canoe at Hodges Village Dam. However, hunting is allowed only on the west side of the French; no hunting is permitted anywhere on the east side of the river at the Hodges Village Dam project. No paintball activity is allowed anywhere at Hodges Village Dam Project. All local and state laws apply. The French River is accessible for canoeing at Greenbrier Park and just downstream of Hodges Village Dam at Augutteback Pond. For those who enjoy cold weather sports, Hodges Village Dam offer many different opportunities, including cross country skiing, snowmobiling (west of French River only), and ice fishing at Augutteback Pond.
Climate - Massachusetts experiences four distinct seasons with slightly varying temperatures in the inland and coastal regions. Along the coast the water is a moderating factor that often prevents large amounts of snowfall from accumulating through the winter. Summer temperatures are usually cooler than low lying inland areas, due to ocean breezes. This region of the country experiences high humidity in the summer season and temperatures that average close to 80 degrees F. Fall and Spring are pleasant times to visit the region with crisp air and low humidity. Brilliant foliage colors can be found in the central and western regions of the state in late September and October. Winter temperatures can be brutally cold on occasion with a humidity-filled wind, but on average winter daytime temperatures reach 35 degrees F and lows reach into the teens. Spring is usually the wettest time of year, but trees, bushes and flowers are blooming by early May.
Hodges Village Dam is located in Oxford, Massahcusetts, easily accessible from the Massachusetts Turnpike and Interstate 395. Take Exit 4B on I-395 to Oxford. Go through Oxford Center and continue straight for one-half mile to Howarth Road. Turn right. From the Massachusetts Turnpike, take the Sturbridge exit and follow Route 20 to Charlton. From here take a right on to Route 31 and follow the signs to Hodges Village Dam.