Hell Hollow Loop

Posted By on September 15, 2016

Hell Hollow Loop

7.5 miles; Voluntown and Sterling, CT

I did the complete loop from top to bottom, starting on the Pachaug Trail, to the Pachaug/Quinebaug Connector Trail, to the Quinebaug Trail, to the Phillips Pond Trail, and back to the Pachaug. But I kind of cheated by using the Forest Road instead of following the Quinebaug all the way. It was too punishing. Very rocky and eroded.

Coincidentally, I met a guy on the Connecticut Forest and Park Association (CFPA) Trails committee who was doing an 8-day backpacking survey of the trails. He said there is a proposal to actually move the Quinebaug to protect it from motorized vehicle use. He also said work is underway to re-open the closed section of the Narragansett Trail from Wintechog Hill Road to Route 2, though there has been no progress on the other closed section, from Route 49 to Tom Wheeler Road.

Logging Operation

Logging Operation

First thing I noticed upon leaving the Pachaug Trail and starting along the Pachaug/Quinebaug Connector were these signs, and a whole lot of clear-cutting. Didn’t actually see anyone working, though, so I figured it was safe to proceed.

The Rocky Quinnebaug

The Rocky Quinebaug

Long, long stretches of the Quinebaug looked like this. It’s kind of a mess. And I have been meeting people on dirt bikes on this loop a lot lately. Today was no exception. Bill A., the guy from the CFPA, was very disappointed with the conditions of the trails through here.

New England Asters

New England Asters

New England Asters, those reliable signs of autumn, are becoming quite abundant on the local trails now.

Still Some Nice Stretches

Still Some Nice Stretches

I don’t mean to give the impression that all of these trails are messed up and eroded, though. There are still plenty of lovely stretches of hiking, and it’s still worth the trip. Here is my map of this hike, however, today I didn’t do the extra little loop up to Locke’s Meadow Pond.qui

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