Billings Lake Open Space

Posted By on May 20, 2014

Billings Lake Open Space

3.16 miles, 1.9 mph

you didn’t actually think i’d only walked 1/2 mile on sunday did you? i did not. i just haven’t had time to put this second sunday post up until today.

this north stonington town property is another “secret” hiking trail i found in my wanderings. it’s accessible from the billings lake boat ramp, but to be honest, i didn’t actually spend hardly any time on town land. the property is adjacent to a section of the pachaug state forest, and that’s pretty much where i walked.

billings lake sign

billings lake sign

as you maybe can see from the sign, there’s a parcel that is outlined on the map. that’s the town property. but the actual trail is just east of that parcel on state land. it’s basically an old woods road and it goes from billings lake in north stonington to route 201 in griswold. it’s an out-and-back. i also did a bit of exploring on a trail that hugged the shore of billings lake as far as a church camp. i was surprised to stumble on a large burned-out area… apparently there was a 10-acre fire on the church camp grounds last month. it was so barren—there hasn’t been time yet for anything to come back. it might be interesting to periodically revisit this area to see what comes back first.

billings lake shore

billings lake shore

this is the lake shore. i had a nice photo of the lake itself, but the photo got corrupted somehow, and came out two-toned. i think i may have been too impatient and put the iphone to sleep before it finished processing the image or something… who knows?

beaver pond

beaver pond

the trail heads north from billings lake to eventually pass an unnamed beaver pond. there were actually several lodges in this pond, tho i didn’t see any of the inhabitants.

jack in the pulpit

jack in the pulpit

there were also plenty of wildflowers on this walk. this is a jack-in-the-pulpit (arisaema triphyllum). there were also pink ladies slippers, rock cress, spring cress, many different kinds of violets, including my favorite bird’s foot, cinquefoil, some nasty spurge, oak catkins, and the air was perfumed by the scent of autumn (or russian, not sure which) olive. which is an invasive plant but smells so sweet.

you can find this hike in the hikefinder. the map that i have linked to is just a larger version of the trail sign, above.

and please allow me to call your attention to a new addition to my blog roll, on the right. bruce fellman is a neighbor of mine, and a very knowledgeable naturalist. his photos are amazing. check it out!

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