The Tunxis Trail northern terminus
Wildness, like pretty much everything else, is relative. If you’re from Maine, the idea of wild Connecticut woods may provoke a chuckle. If you’re a city-hound, almost any forest may seem way too nature-dominated. I’ll be the first to admit that some of Connecticut’s forest tracts are small and intruded upon by civilization (Connecticut’s Wild Corner is a notable exception). But in Tunxis State Forest, Katie and I walked for 13 miles without seeing a car, or hearing a leaf blower, or meeting hardly any other hikers at all. We found moose scat and knew for sure that bears were in the neighborhood. Wild.
For a change, I am posting my Day Hike Notes (below) and my Taking a Hike column simultaneously. Katie and I took this hike over a month ago. Here are the links to the column:
Tunxis Trail in The Norwalk Hour
Tunxis Trail in Hersam Acorn Newspapers
I am, by the way, just back from the wild Maine woods. More to follow.
DAY HIKE NOTES—TUNXIS TRAIL
DATE: Friday, May 11th.
START: Pell Rd at CT-MA line, Hartland CT (GPS 42.037715, -72.898143).
FINISH: CT Route 219 northeast of Saville Dam, Barkhamsted CT (GPS 41.926324, -72.925151).
ROUTE: Tunxis Trail south.
DISTANCE: About 13 miles.
TIME: 8 hours (8:50 a.m. to 4:50 p.m.)
TERRAIN: Only moderate elevation gain and loss, but often rocky & rooty underfoot.
MAP: I carried the CT Walk Book (a bit bulky, really).
WEATHER: Sunny and warm, high in upper 60s.
WILDLIFE: I don’t associate Connecticut with moose, but some do live here, and we saw their scat!
BREAKFAST: Cheese & bacon hard roll from Pleasant Valley General Store, Barkhamsted.
LUNCH: Sandwich and snacks somewhere in the Tunxis State Forest.
UPS: 13 miles of tranquil forest.
DOWNS: Worrying about my (still newish) car on rutted and potholed Pell Rd.
KIT: This was the first hike of the year when I carried my water reservoir instead of bottles—no chance of freezing up and a greater quantity of liquid required.
COMPANY: Katie McWilliams from beginning to end; 3 encounters with other hikers, mostly nearing the end.
Clouds above Indian Council Caves