Narragansett-Grassland Trail is a 1.7 mile loop trail located near Charlestown, RI that offers the chance to see wildlife. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking, walking, trail running, and birding.
A wide farm road leads to a 35-acre meadow, brimming with wildflowers and dragonflies. The easiest access to the Narragansett-Grassland Trail is from the parking lot on Old Mill Road. The trail is not blazed, but look for a wooden kiosk, which serves as the trailhead. The trail starts in a shady, upland forest of oak and black birch, featuring lively birdsong almost year-round. Soon the path slopes gently but steadily downhill, past mountain laurel, ferns, and chipmunk burrows. At the bottom of the hill, a side trail on the left leads to a stone fireplace. The cabin that once accompanied it has long since disappeared. Straight ahead, the trail breaks out of the forest and a large, open field suddenly comes into view. A mile-long grassy trail loops around the field, maintained under a contract with the Audubon Society of Rhode Island. The trail and the habitat were both enhanced in 2008, when The Nature Conservancy heavily thinned the pines on the east and north sides of the field. A healthy shrub community of blueberry, huckleberry, and bayberry has filled in the gaps between the remaining trees, providing cover and food for a host of songbirds. The wide, flat trail invites leisurely exploration, and four evenly spaced benches offer opportunities to enjoy the show. Turkey vultures often glide overhead during the day, and a dozen or more deer will come out to feed in the evenings.