This is one in a series of section hikes traversing the Connecticut portion of the Metacomet Trail from North to South.
Each hike will be 5 to 7 miles of moderate hiking over a 3 to 4 hour duration. The group will meet at the end of the trail head and car pool to the beginning. We will then walk back to the cars and make arrangements to pick up the cars that were left at the start. It would be nice to have a group of people who are interested in completing all of the sections. Connecticut Forest and Park awards a patch to those who do so.
Section 5 – Talcott Ridge to Route 4
Distance: 6.1 miles
Terrain: Cruise along the MDC water control dike then ascend the ridge line to a rolling hike with several views. Follow the ridge line as it gradually descends to Route 4.
Pace: A moderate pace with breaks for water and views but the intent is to cover the distance.
When: Sunday 10AM EDT 15 July 2012
Meeting location: Commuter parking lot near the intersection of Prattling Pond Road and Route 4 (Farmington Ave) in Farmington, CT. It is a small lot, so we may need to relocate some cars at the start of the hike. We will split up into car pools and drive to the trail head at the MDC Reservoir No. 6 parking lot on the north side of U.S. Route 44 (Albany Ave).
Who to look for: Silver BMW
Food and Drink: A snack and a quart of water. You can substitute scotch if it's single malt. Plans can be discussed for an after hike lunch meeting location during the hike. If you have any suggestions, post them to the group.
Trail Map: http://www.ctxguide.com/ctxguide_232.htm
Background:The Metacomet Trail traverses the traprock Metacomet Ridge which extends from Long Island Sound to the Massachusetts/ Vermont border. This ridge, rising hundreds of feet above the Connecticut River, Farmington River, and Quinnipiac River valleys, is a prominent landscape feature of central Connecticut. From south to north, the trail uses the ridges of the Hanging Hills, Short Mountain, Ragged Mountain, Bradley Mountain, Pinnacle Rock, Rattlesnake Mountain, Farmington Mountain, Talcott Mountain, Hatchet Hill, Peak Mountain, and West Suffield Mountain. Abrupt vertical cliffs with visible talus slopes and frequent viewpoints are common throughout. Views are generally to the west from West Suffield Mountain south through Ragged Mountain; west and south in the Hanging Hills. The Farmington River cuts through the ridgeline between Hatchet Hill and Talcott Mountain in the Tariffville Gorge (east of Simsbury). Historic features along the trail include Old Newgate Prison museum and copper mine in East Granby; Heublein Tower on Talcott Mountain with expansive view of four states; the Hill-Stead museum in Farmington, Connecticut, notable for its French impressionist painting collection and gardens; and Hubbard Park of the Hanging Hills of Meriden, designed with the help of famous landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead. The traprock ridges and talus slopes of the Metacomet Ridge are also home to several unique microclimate ecosystems that support species of plants that are unusual or endangered in this part of New England, and are a seasonal migration path for raptors. Viewshed from the ledges include agrarian land, suburbs, small towns, river corridors, the eastern Berkshires ridgeline, and metropolitan Meriden and Hartford.
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