Getting outside and breathing the fresh air is more important than ever right now! Fortunately, living along the CT Shoreline offers an abundance of opportunity to do so. Of course, we have our beloved beaches at the coastline of the Long Island Sound, but do you know about the Conservation Trails, Regional Water Authority Trails, and parks situated inland? These resources will offer great opportunities to build in educational lessons for the kids at the same time as maintaining social distancing for the benefit of our communities. Some facilities may require additional permits and more information can be found by following the provided links. Read along to see what each of our Shoreline communities has to offer!
- The Branford Land Trust offers 12 hiking trails with views of the Long Island Sound, and tidal marshes.
- The Guilford Land Trust offers 14 properties that are freely accessible for visitors to enjoy.
- The Town of Guilford owns 4 properties that either border or connect to Land Trust properties and offer additional opportunities for exploration.
- Take a trip to Chittenden Park and gain access to the National New England Trail which runs from the Guilford Shoreline north to the New Hampshire border. Feeling adventurous?!?
- Guilford offers several beaches and a lake if you’re in the mood for more of a relaxed stroll or a little clam digging.
- The Madison Land Trust offers 22 trails! The majority are north of I-95 and can take you along the Hammonasset River or near the Guilford line to explore the old Iron Works.
- Visit the crown jewel of the Shoreline with a trip to Hammonasset State Park. At Connecticut’s largest shoreline park you can walk the beach and collect shells, take a footpath into the marshes for bird watching, or hop on your bike for a gentle ride along the paved paths.
- Rockland Preserve located in North Madison, near the Durham line, is an area filled with rocky hills, steep cliffs, and wooded areas and offers easy access to walkers and hikers by way of long abandoned ancient roads. Let your mind wander and think back to the original settlers who traveled these roads by foot, horse, and wagon.
- Bauer Park, located just a stone’s throw away from the center of town offers 2 easy walking trails as well as open field space.
- The Clinton Land Trust offers 5 hiking trails throughout its more than 800 acres of preserved marshland, swamps, and woodlands.
- Chatfield Hollow State Park offers a multitude of trails with opportunities to spot Indian caves as you head out into the woods or to push a stroller as you make your way around Chatfield Pond on its paved roads.
- The Killingworth Land Trust owns several properties with the most well know being Parmelee Farm. In addition to the trails at the farm you can explore 3 additional trails that overlook Deer Lake, the Hammonasset River, and Winkel Pond. The trust also owns 2 cranberry bogs, but in order to protect the plants these areas are not open for free exploration. Keep an eye on their calendar for future guided tours and cranberry harvests!
- The Middlesex Land Trust offers 2 properties in Durham. The Mica Ledges Preserve connects with Madison’s Rockland Preserve via the Maria Schmidt Trail and the Coginchaug Quarry Preserve, with its 17.42 acre preserve, is located off Meetinghouse Road.
- Trimountain State Park, located in both Durham and Wallingford, is for the slightly more adventurous. The isolated recreation area is not accessible by road and can only be reached by way of the Mattabesett Trail. This state park encompasses portions of both Fowler Mountain and Trimountain.
- Millers Pond State Park located at the border of Durham and Haddam offers several hiking options in addition to being a great location for small mouth bass and trout fishing in its spring fed pond.