Archive for the ‘ ~STONINGTON CT~ ’ Category

Dean Mills Preserve – Stonington

  • Dean Mills Preserve
  • Jerry Browne Road, Stonington, CT
  • Trailhead:  41°21’53.28″N, 71°56’12.72″W
  • Last Time Hiked: October 8, 2021
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.0 miles
  • Fairly easy with some elevation.

This is a short mile long out and back with a short loop at the end. The trail on the way in is mostly gradually uphill and the short loop is relatively flat in comparison with two small stream crossings. The trail crosses over outcrops, areas of pines, and pass stone walls.

Trail Map: Dean Mills Preserve


The Access Trail at Dean Mills

Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center – Stonington

  • Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center
  • Pequotsepos Road, Stonington, CT
  • Trailhead:  41°21’46.34″N, 71°56’47.63″W
  • Last Time Hiked: October 8, 2021
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.8 miles
  • Fairly easy with some elevation.

The Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center offers several miles of trails. For this hike, start at the backside of the Nature Center. First make a loop around the duck pond. From there follow the boardwalk to the red blazed trail. The boardwalk turns to the right and becomes part of the red blazed trail. It crosses over a small stream before bending to the right and coming out to a field. Stay to the left here and continue ahead. The trail will soon turn left back into the forest. From here follow the red blazes as the trail loops around the southern end of the property passing several impressive boulders along the way and crossing the stream once again. Ahead on the right is the white blazed Ledge Trail. This trail winds through the dense forest first up and along a ridge before meandering down to Hidden Pond. The trail turns to the left before the power lines and descends downhill eventually coming out to the back of the Pre-School. From here make your way around the school to the parking area.

Trail Map: Denison Pequotsepos


Boardwalk Along Red Trail

Coogan Farm – Stonington

  • Coogan Farm
  • Greenmanville Avenue, Stonington, CT
  • Trailhead:  41°22’0.89″N, 71°57’43.95″W
  • Last Time Hiked: October 8, 2021
  • Approximate distance hiked: 1.5 miles
  • Fairly easy with some elevation.

Part of the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center, Coogan Farm sits on the western end of the property. This hike starting at the farmhouse and art center first follows a dirt road into the property up to a storage building. Pass the building and bear right. The trail, blazed blue, steadily climbs up hill at first flanked by stone walls. There will be a few trails that bear to the left. Continue to follow the blue blazes. The trail eventually comes to and follows power lines. When you get to the intersection of power lines look for the purple blazed trail. There will be a sign here directing you to the Stillman Mansion. This trail is much narrower and climbs back uphill passes stone walls and boulders before coming to the foundation of the mansion that was never completed. Take some time here as the structure is quite interesting. From here at the opposite end of the foundation follow the trail slightly downhill and turn right. There will be a large pavilion in the field. Following the grass mowed trail do a short loop keeping to the left into the orchard. Turn left here and follow the connector trail downhill to an opening in the stone wall. From here continue straight downhill and back to the storage building. Here turn right and retrace your steps back to the parking area.

Trail Map: Coogan Farm


Signage at Coogan Farm

Barn Island – Stonington

  • Barn Island Wildlife Management Area
  • Palmer Neck Road, Stonington, CT
  • Trailhead: 41°20’22.38″N, 71°52’38.91″W
  • Last Time Hiked: November 30, 2014
  • Approximate distance hiked: 5.0 miles
  • Fairly easy with some slight elevation.


I met up with a fellow blogger this morning for a hike in her neck of the woods. She is quite familiar with the property and has been here several times. This would be my first venture onto this property. Hunting is allowed here but we were able to explore the property without the worry of hunters as hunting is not allowed on Sundays in Connecticut. We started the hike from the parking area by the informational sign and followed the stone dust path as it went downhill through a small section of woods before coming to the tidal flats. In this area there are great views of Little Narragansett Bay beyond the golden grass of the flats. In the distance you can see the Watch Hill Light and Napatree Point. Continuing along the path we headed back into another sections of woods. Here we came to another sign with a map of the property. We went right here leaving the woods and into another area of tidal flats. Here we saw an egret as well as some ducks. We soon turned right at the next intersection onto a grass road. This is actually a spur trail that leads to the eastern edge of the property. Along this stretch we saw a great blue heron and more ducks. The Latimer Reef Light (actually in New York) is visible from here on clear days. We soon found ourselves back in the woods and climbing slightly uphill. Along this stretch are several stone walls and a cemetery with graves dating back to the 1800’s. Soon the trail ends and comes to a paved road. The road, named Brucker Pentway, passes a few homes and the entrance of the Boy Scouts Camp Kitchtau. We turned left onto an unnamed road shortly after the stucco barn. This road led back to the wildlife management area. Passing the gate at the entrance of the property we found ourselves on another grass road. We were surrounded by fields that would be home to wildflowers in the summer months. In the fields were several poles with bluebird houses on them. This road would eventually lead back into the woods. Shortly after entering the woods we came to another intersection. We turned right here. The trail then winds through an area of woods for a while passing several stone walls. There are several narrow side trails along this stretch. It is best to stay on the main trail and go left at all “major” intersections until you return to the sign with the map where we made the first turn. When we reached the sign we turned right and retraced our steps back to the parking area. On the other side of the parking area there is a short spur trail that leads to a small sandy point into the bay. The short walk is worth it for the views.


Trail map can be found at: Barn Island.

Tidal Flats At Barn Island

Tidal Flats At Barn Island