In order to keep the local deer herd in balance with the other ecological components of the Forest, we open the Massachusetts section of Hopkins Forest for 12 days each fall for shotgun hunting. Recently hunters have been harvesting between five and ten white-tailed deer per season. During this time, the forest is closed to other users. To avoid conflicts with other forest users, no other forms of hunting are permitted in the forest. Hunters must obtain a special no-fee permit to hunt in the forest (below).
Hopkins Forest Hunting Map (interactive)
Hopkins Forest 2023 Deer Hunting Regulations
Applications accepted no later than November 1st.
Williams College and the Center for Environmental Studies grant permission to hunt deer by firearms during the 12-day season of November 27th through December 9th (excluding Sunday, December 3th). ANTLERED DEER and ANTLERLESS DEER with PERMIT in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations of the United States, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and other jurisdictions, and in compliance with conditions stated as follows for the Hopkins Memorial Forest (HMF):
- The permit is not transferable and applies only to the individual to whom it is issued and only for the specified days.
- No other wildlife is to be hunted in Hopkins Forest.
- The HMF identification tag must be prominently displayed on the person while hunting.
- No hunting or discharge of firearms within the area indicated in red on the attached map—this includes all areas east of Northwest Hill Road!
- Expended and unexpended shells are to be collected and removed from the forest.
- Wheeled, tracked or motorized vehicles are prohibited.
- Do not park as to block private driveways and public and private roads.
- There is no access to HMF through adjacent privately owned properties. All abutting private properties are posted — no trespassing.
- Camping, fires, littering or the disposal of any material is prohibited in the forest.
- No hunting of animals, (other than deer) or collecting or damaging flora, or cultural objects is permitted.
- Tampering with any structure, scientific instrument, or marking is prohibited.
- The use of tools, including but not limited to saws, axes, picks, and shovels, is prohibited.
- The construction of deer blinds or stands is strictly prohibited.
- Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we ask that hunters please wear masks when entering the building (Rosenburg Center).