Narragansett Trail, N. Stonington

Posted By on October 5, 2012

Narragansett Trail, N. Stonington

5.81 miles   ★★★★★

fair warning: i will be doing more than my share of whining about this hike, but believe me, ultimately, they are all minor quibbles. it’s a beautiful hike.

first whine? the narragansett trail. whoever first laid this trail out must have searched high and low for every single boulder field and abandoned rock quarry on either side of the state line, because i have never not been on any segment of this trail that has not, at some point, traversed a boulder field and/or abandoned rock quarry. today was certainly no exception.

indian cucumber root, medeola virginiana

indian cucumber root, medeola virginiana

this absolutely gorgeous indian cucumber root plant was my first photo on this walk. who knew they had such pretty bracts? it looks like a flower.

second whine? hey, connecticut forest and park association, pale blue blazes on pale gray bark. perfect choice! who could miss those????? ok. i needed to get that off my chest. i must have made at least 5 backtracks because i missed blazes. pale blue blazes. on pale gray bark. and every time i came to a fork in the trail, i picked the wrong one. every. single. time. because i missed a blaze, or because it wasn’t clearly marked.

pretty turkey tail

pretty turkey tail

i am not sure this actually is turkey tail fungus, but it’s so pretty. that lavender edge is almost luminescent.

stand-off

stand-off

and speaking of turkeys, i came out of the woods at one point and into some fields, and at the far end was a flock of turkeys. we both stopped. it was a stand-off. they blinked first.

hewitt pond bridge

hewitt pond bridge

just beyond the turkey field was a very pretty bridge crossing. this is over a dam at the hewitt pond bridge. beautiful spot. i know i keep using all these glowing adjectives; gorgeous, beautiful, pretty… but i can’t help it. this hike was all those things, although i’m sure the perfect weather (sunny and low 70’s) didn’t hurt.

right after this bridge came the scariest part of the hike: the part where you have to cross route 2. for anyone not familiar with route 2 in north stonington, it’s the route to foxwoods casino, and people come barreling up and down this road as if it’s the indianapolis speedway. there is a traffic light not far from where you come out of the woods here, so it wasn’t actually completely life-threatening, but still. pretty hairy.

beaver pond

beaver pond

the good news is that you pretty quickly leave the maniacs headed for the casino behind and re-enter the woods, although the climb up from that point is the most strenuous one of the hike. at one point i found myself trying to remember just what the &#@$%^@ it was about this “hiking” thing that i found so &#@$%^@ attractive. that’s how i know the climb is bad, when i start hating hiking. fortunately, this only lasts as long as the climb does.

this is a beaver lodge on yawbux brook. a longish stretch of this hike follows yawbux brook, and at one point right about here they had to re-route the trail, i presume because of the beaver dam.

crossing yawbux brook

crossing yawbux brook

one of the three or four places the trail crosses yawbux brook.

stalked puffballs-in-aspic, calostoma cinnabarinum

stalked puffballs-in-aspic, calostoma cinnabarinum

finally got curious enough about this fungus to go look it up. first of all, i love the name: stalked puffballs-in-aspic. because, eeww. they grow up out of a slimy mass. but i took this picture mostly because they looked like boobs. i’m immature like that sometimes.

to hike this stretch of the narragansett trail, start on wintechog hill, opposite the north stonington transfer station (those who are adventurous enough can start further down wintechog hill road and climb lantern hill; i wasn’t that ambitious today). i finished up at the wyassup lake boat launch, thanks to a handy car-spot courtesy of my dh. just follow (if you can) the blue blazes all the way. see david brierley’s excellent maps and descriptions for this stretch of the narragansett trail.

Comments

4 Responses to “Narragansett Trail, N. Stonington”

  1. sharon says:

    those turkey tails were a wonder!

  2. […] is the big beaver pond on the narragansett trail. i have blogged about this pond before. there are several lodges on […]

  3. […] only seen this lavender-edged turkey tail fungus on one other hike, but it’s so beautiful. new wallpaper for my computer, for […]

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