Skip to main content

West Springfield

Environmental Committee
Home  About Us  FAQs  What's Happening  Events  Photos 2009-2010  Photos 2011-2016  Violation Photos  Bear Hole Directions  Links  Contact Us   
Photos of Bear Hole and Mittineague Park violations - page of shame
If you ever witness any type of violation 
(i.e. illegal vehicles, dumping, hunting or suspicious activity) please notify either
West Springfield Police: 263-3210 and / or Massachusetts Environmental Police: (800) 632-8075
If you have a camera and it's safe to do so, take a picture and forward it to us.
We'll add it our "page of shame".  A photo could also assist with prosecution.
People like you can help be the "eyes and ears" of the Bear Hole Watershed and Mittineague Park.
most recent photos at bottom of page 


                        October 17, 2009                                                                  August 2009 

Trail destruction from off road vehicles.

 Left (off-road vehicle damage) photo taken adjacent to Millville Road, near Lost Pond in Bear Hole.

Right (ATV damage) photo taken along a trail adjacent to the reservoir.

It is encouraged when people see illegal vehicles in Bear Hole they obtain license

plate info and immediately report their observations to police. 

Illegal vehicles destroy trails, promote erosion & create ruts that retain water, which provides

a prime breeding ground for insects.

 Mittineague Park 2010-2012 violation photos slide show 
PLEASE NOTE:  Some of the images may alarm people regarding the park's safety.  The park is a very safe place to visit. 
The graffiti images are isolated incidents and by no means indicates the park has the presence of gangs. 
Images are meant to educate the public regarding the urban based issues Mittineague Park faces
and how important it is that issues be reported to police and/or the Parks and Recreation Department.
  Click on the sign for slide show photos.     
Clicking on an image will make it full screen. 
Using the scroll wheel of your computer's mouse will allow you scroll the images.

Parks and Recreation Department owned lands:  2013-2016 Violation photo slide show 
Thanks to the Mittineague Park ranger program, vandalism and illegal activities in Mittineague Park have decreased.  
The park ranger is on duty from April thru November.  These photos were taken on behalf of the 
Parks & Recreation Department "Park Watch Program".  Everyday citizens watch for unwarranted circumstances and report findings to town officials.
These photos only represent some of the incidents occurring on lands managed by Parks & Recreation Department.  There are many other
incidents reported to the police and/or Park & Rec that have no photo(s).  
  Prompt reporting by citizens allows for a timely response by town officials and helps safeguard our public lands.
The Mittineague Park ranger, when on duty, can be contacted at 413-636-5433.
The West Springfield Police can also be contacted:  Emergencies  911  / Non-Emergencies 413-263-3210  ext# 0  

Click on the icon for slide show photos

Most recent photos are at the bottom...

October 19, 2009 

Truck stuck in the muck in Bear Hole.  This violation was reported to police by a vigilant citizen.

Removal required two heavy-duty tow trucks and a Bobcat tractor. 

The vehicle's owner, who is from Hampden, Massachusetts; faces in excess of $500 in costs. 

Location:  Great Plains Road, near the intersection of Morgan Road


Thanksgiving weekend - November 2009

Illegal off-road vehicles on Millville Road


Thanksgiving weekend - November 2009

Ilegal vehicles on Millville Road



January 15, 2010

1998 Honda Passport Sport Utility Vehicle off the road and stuck in a wetland area.

This occurred along Great Plains Road, not far from Morgan Road, within an area closed to vehicles.

Incident occurred at 2:11am.  Vehicle was trespassing while being improperly registered. 

Two intoxicated individuals fled on foot.  One was apprehended and arrested by police. 

The other offender remained hiding in the woods and was not located.  Photo taken 7am. 


February 15, 2010

Volkswagon Jetta dumped in Lost Pond.  The car was stolen from Dwight Street in Springfield.

Due to its location, removal was a logistical challenge and was done by

Red's Towing of West Springfield at a cost of $7,700. 

The pond was not contaminated.  No car fluids leaked.  According to the victim's insurance provider,

members of the Environmental Committee were the first civilians to report this to police. 


March 21, 2010

Illegal dumping along Prospect in Bear Hole


April 24, 2010

Illegal dumping below Lost Pond


August 15, 2010

Millville Road gate breached & vandalized with it's post pulled out of the ground.

Notice how the post is still secured via a lock and chain to the gate.


August 25, 2010     12:30pm

A shed being constructed into a hillside at an isolated location within Bear Hole.

This site was discovered by an Envirnomental Committee member on a hike.

No offender(s) identified and as a result, no legal action pursued by the town. 

The shed was subsequently dismanted and recycled.  The site was cleared of all debris.


  September 13, 2010

Illegal dumping on Morgan Road within Bear Hole.


November 22, 2010

Deceased coyote located at the Four Corners area of Bear Hole.

Coyote was either shot with an arrow or gun and had its tail cut off. 

Hunting or wildlife abuse within Bear Hole is prohibited and punishable by law.


February 27, 2011

Illegal tree mounted deer hunting stand within the woods of Bear Hole.

Hunting of any type within the watershed is illegal.


March 19, 2011

Party spot within a wooded area that abuts Prospect in Bear Hole.


September 18, 2011

Illegal dumping on Great Plains Road near the intersection of Morgan Road


June 18, 2012

Illeagal dumping along Morgan Road in Bear Hole


June 18, 2012

Illegally dumped couch - Great Plains Road at the jersey barriers near Morgan Road 

December 12, 2012

Stolen car found at night within a remote area at the Millville / Quarry Road vicinity in Bear Hole.

Car was found by a hiker and was subsequently reported to the police.

Due to the challenging location, it took weeks to coordinate removal.

March 11, 2013

An unauthorized shelter found within a remote area in Bear Hole.  Shelter did not appear to be actively used.

Side view is below

March 11, 2013

Side view of a shelter found within a remote area in Bear Hole.  Well constructed using

hemlock limbs on the sides, which when they had their needles, would have provided excellent camouflage.  

A tarp is used for the roof.  A small camp fire site was next to the shelter.

April 7, 2013

Illegal off-road vehicle traversing up East Mountain via a trail that begins near Lost Pond in Bear Hole.

This photo provides the license plate, so the image was forwarded to the police.

May 8, 2014

Illegal dirt bike and ATV riders at Four Corners.  U-Haul used as a transport

April 27, 2015

Dirt bike rider loading-up at Four Corners

September 26, 2015

Hefty heap of illegally dumped remodeling debris.  Morgan @ Great Plains Road

September 26, 2015 - 3:42pm

Illegal dirt bike rider entering the gated end of Prospect in Bear Hole (photo 1 of 2)

September 26, 2015 - 3:42pm

Illegal dirt bike rider entering the gated end of Prospect in Bear Hole (photo 2 of 2)

October 4, 2015 - 3:16pm

Illegal dirt bike rider exiting Great Plains Road in Bear Hole

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

SUV being towed from Bear Hole with West Springfield Police looking on.

The vehicle was illegally trespassing on a closed section of road in Bear Hole.

Operating at a high speed and sometimes fish-tailing, almost hitting hikers and dog walkers.

Vehicle crashed twice.  Once into a large, metal fence post at the Bear Hole Rd parking area.

Second time, into a service gate along Great Plains, destroying the gate.  Multiple $300 watershed ordinance fines issued, SUV towed / impounded and at least $1,000 worth of damage was incurred to the vehicle.  

 October 7, 2016

Severe wetland damage where Paucatuck Brook empties into

Bear Hole Reservoir at the glen of the historic restaurant.  Damage done by ATVs.  

This island used to be an island of grass. Now mud and ruts.  Strongly suspected the offenders 

are young adults and entered from the Lane Quarry via what was a defunct trail.  They crossed

through a shallow section of reservoir to the island and were also quite harsh on the trail

within the glen of the restaurant.  Town officials and W Spfld Police notified.