What we're about

Our meetup group schedules hikes regularly for both the advanced hiker looking for long and strenuous workouts as well as the less serious hiker looking for shorter and more moderate walks. We hike all the trails and preserves in the Litchfield County area and often venture into New York and Massachusetts. Our focus is on exercise, making friends, and appreciating nature. We usually follow each hike with a social gathering at a local eatery.

This group is unique in that there is strong emphasis on learning about the diverse flora and fauna of Connecticut's wooded habitats and its ecology. I recently completed the DEEP/Goodwin Forest Master Naturalist program and love sharing the things I find exciting about the areas we explore. I am also really interested in CT history. When I'm not leading hikes for Litchfield County Explorers, I guide hikes professionally for the Mayflower Inn in Washington, CT and work for Connecticut Audubon Society EcoTravel. I am certified in wilderness first aid from the National Outdoor Leadership School.

Check out my other meetup groups! Connecticut Walkers and Friends and Hiking With Goodwin Master Naturalists.

Please join us!

Rami Haxhi

Upcoming events (5+)

Hike the New Jersey Appalachian Trail Section 1

450 Appalachian Trail

I'm going to hike the entire New Jersey Appalachian Trail between June 8 and June 16. Anyone can join me who does hikes regularly of 10 or more miles. We'll start at the NY/NJ border and do daily shuttle hikes until we reach the Pennsylvania border. Early June is the best time to do these hikes (still too muddy in Vermont). There will be six hikes. You can come for as many hikes as you'd like. When you sign up, let me know if you have questions about meet points. Here's the schedule: Day 1 Saturday, June 8 - NJ/NY border to Route 94 (9.1 miles) Day 2 Sunday, June 9 - Route 94 to Rt. 284 (10.8 miles) Day 3 Tuesday, June 11 - Rt. 284 to Rt. 23 ( 9.8 miles) Day 4 Wednesday, June 12 - Rt. 23 to Culver's Gap (14.3 miles) Day 5 Saturday, June 15 - Rt. 206-Millbrook Rd. (14.5 miles) Day 6 Sunday, June 16 - Millbrook to Delaware River (13.7 miles) I plan to do a hike, stay overnight, then hike the next day. If anyone else would like to do the same it could be fun getting together in the evening for dinner. Once we know who's coming, we can figure out the accommodations. The New Jersey stretch of the Appalachian Trail is 74 miles long and begins at Abram S. Hewitt State Forest in the northern most point and runs west and south through Wawayanda State Park, High Point State Park, Stokes State Forest, ending at Worthington State Forest. The NJ AT can range from very flat and easy to very rugged, rocky trails ascending to elevations from 350 to 1,803 feet. In addition to heavily wooded and rocky surfaces, the terrain also includes bogs and wetlands with plenty of wildlife, including an active bear population, deer herds, and many species of birds. One major highlight is the spectacular Pochuck Boardwalk and bridge (pictured above). The mile long boardwalk and 110 foot suspension bridge was 24 years in planning with seven years of actual construction at a cost of over $800,000. This is one of those must do sections of the AT that everyone can enjoy.

Sunrise Hike @ Sharon Audubon

Location visible to members

Rise n shine! Time for a breath taking, early morning hike at the gorgeous Sharon Audubon Sanctuary. Meet -855am in parking lot Bring- sun block, bug spray, water, snack, CAMERA, typical hiking essentials, good attitude! Not to bring- no dogs allowed this hike Attire- proper hiking clothing , dress for weather. Aprox 5 miles. Moderate pace. Beginners welcome provided you follow above guidelines and are in good physical condition for hiking. Hike adventure includes : 2 ponds with amazing views, a bird viewing station, low impact climbs, a brook we will pass over a cpl times, plenty of photo ops, birds of prey in captivity and a wonderful flower garden at the end of hike! Time/miles: aprox 2 hrs / aprox 4-5 miles

Gertrude's Nose

Minnewaska State Park Preserve

Gertrude's Nose in the Shawangunk Mountains. I've never done this hike and have always wanted to. I know people will sign up who have and so we shouldn't get lost or fall off of a cliff. Some say it's one of the most scenic hikes in the northeast. This hike will be around 8 miles in length and will be difficult. You need to be experienced. We'll take time to smell the flowers. Trail map: https://parks.ny.gov/parks/attachments/MinnewaskaMinnewaskaStateParkTrailMap.pdf More about this hike: https://hikethehudsonvalley.com/hikes/minnewaska-ii-gertrudes-nose/ There is a parking fee of $8.00 per car. Rain cancels the hike.

Mushroom Hunting Foundation Immersion Class

26 Pine St

$40.00

The Mushroom Hunting Foundation is presenting an immersion class, combining several ways of learning about local wild mushrooms. It begins with a slideshow class; founders Ryan Bouchard and Emily Schmidt will cover all the basics of mushroom science and safety, and explain the best species of the season (focusing on the ones considered "safe for beginners" to cook with). After a Q&A session and a break, we will head to Mohawk State Forest for a close look at local fungi in their natural habitats. Learn why harvesting wild mushrooms is sustainable, and how knowing their ecology can help you find them. Tools of the trade will be demonstrated as mushrooms are collected—some for study, some for recipes! For the grand finale, we will return to the Town Hall for a delicious cooking demonstration, where you'll enjoy the astonishingly varied flavors of several gourmet mushroom species. Fee is $40/person, payable by cash on the day of the event or via Venmo/Paypal. ***Students should dress for hiking in the woods and bring water and a snack/lunch.

Past events (163)

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