Erisman Woodlands/Babcock Ridge

Posted By on September 12, 2016

Erisman Woodlands/Babcock Ridge

6.6 miles (as hiked from home; 2.5 miles total trails), North Stonington, CT

I just wanted to get out without having to drive, so I took this opportunity to try out the new (to me) trail blazed on the Erisman Woodlands/Babcock Ridge Preserves that are within walking distance from home and I loved it. You can now do a very nice figure-8 loop for about 2-1/2 miles here, and come out back on the Reutemann Road trailhead, avoiding another mile or so on the road. Nice, though I’m not sure my 4 miles of road-walking justified even 2-1/2 miles in the woods.

No Water

No Water

I’m afraid I’m rather a broken record lately, but again, the nice little bridge at the bottom of the hill on Erisman Woodlands was basically bridging dirt, not water.

Best. Signage. Ever.

Best. Signage. Ever.

For a little 2-1/2 mile long trail system, there are a zillion signs. I AM NOT COMPLAINING HERE. I can only wish all preserves were so well marked. Get lost here and you’ve really got some reading comprehension problems, is all I’m saying.

This hike is actually 2 Avalonia Land Conservancy preserves that abut each other, and the climb back up from the bottom of the little [currently dry] brook on Erisman Woodlands to the ridge of Babcock Ridge fame is a moderate climb, but not exactly the White Mountains. And once you get to the top of the ridge, it’s downright beautiful. This is my favorite part of the hike, and I got to see it twice… once on the way out and again on the way back.

They Read My Mind

They Read My Mind

Speaking of “the way back,” the climb back up to Babcock Ridge is a pretty steep one; much steeper than the climb from Erisman Woodlands. I was just contemplating the climb back up when I came upon this brilliant little sign! It’s still steep, don’t get me wrong, but does a little “hair-pinning,” making it an easier proposition.

You can find out more about these properties at the Avalonia Land Conservancy website.  There is a combined trail map on that page.

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