Patrick and I have paddled the small Bigelow Pond at Bigelow Hollow State Park however the much larger Mashapaug Pond is the better place to go. There’s plenty of area to explore and it’s large enough to really get a workout, if you like. While the boat launch is in the state park, much of the shore and all of the islands in Mashapaug Pond are privately owned. There are a number of very nice houses along the shore (so it’s not packed with houses and developed areas) and there’s plenty of wooded area and opportunity to see wildlife. This is a great spot to go.
The boat launch is a nice area, though by about 11:00 am it’s pretty busy. On a warm day the parking area is completely packed and the closest parking spot is a good walk away. At the boat launch is also a trail out to picnic tables near the water and some rocks that people sunbathe on and jump off of, so that end of the pond can have quite a bit of noise. Getting further away from the launch it’s possible to hear some highway noise, though it’s really not distracting.