Ayers Gap and Baileys Ravine

Posted By on July 29, 2014

Ayers Gap and Baileys Ravine

1.5 miles, 2 mph; franklin, ct

well, this was an entertaining hike, if coming across a couple doing the nasty right beside the trail is your idea of entertainment. it’s not exactly mine, but hey, to each his/her own, i guess.

this is a nature conservancy property and right off the bat it’s a very steep climb up from the parking area. in fact, it’s all uphill to about the place where the trail loops back (see the map in the hikefinder entry). but it’s not bad except for that first quarter mile.

Trail from the Parking Area

Trail from the Parking Area

this is the trail from the parking area. it kind of reminded me of a challenging stretch on the long pond section of the narragansett trail in hopkinton. it was certainly as steep.

View

View

after the steepest part of the climb, the trail follows a ridge line overlooking the town of franklin, connecticut. you can see distant farms and fields. it’s quite lovely. must be great when the leaves are off the trees. by the way, it was also along this part of the hike that i got another kind of view, if you know what i mean.

Fern Shadows

Fern Shadows

the nature conservancy website mentions that there is a rare species of fern on this property. i have no idea if these shadows are of that special fern, but they caught my eye nonetheless.

Aged Oysters

Aged Oysters

also found these mushrooms on a birch log on the side of the trail. they looked as if they could be oyster mushrooms, but they weren’t especially fresh… they were covered with flies and looked kind of rotten.

Bailey Brook

Bailey Brook

this is at the point where the trail crosses bailey brook. it looks as though it could be rather tricky in a season where the water is higher. right now it’s a dry crossing, with only a small, easily stepped-over trickle in the middle.

Waterfall at Bailey's Ravine

Waterfall at Bailey’s Ravine

once the trail reaches its northern-most point, it picks up an old woods road and loops back down towards the parking area. it’s at the end of the white-blazed trail that you come to the waterfall at bailey’s ravine. this part reminded me a lot of the gorge section of the narragansett trail in voluntown. there’s a very nice plaque, and then a tiny bit of road-walking to get back to your car.

you can find this hike in the hikefinder.

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