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Top Spots

Top Spots For Hikes

August 27, 2011 8:00 AM

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Photo Credit: CT Gov

Photo Credit: CT Gov

By Mary Fischer

Summer is winding down and the air is starting to get cool and crisp, indicating that Fall is just around the corner. This is the perfect time of year to enjoy a great hike in Connecticut without having to beat the heat. Check out our list below for some of the best places to enjoy Connecticut’s natural surroundings, all while getting a little exercise!

heubleintower Top Spots For Hikes

Photo Credit: CT Gov

Talcott Mountain State Park
Rt 185
Simsbury, CT 06070
(860) 242-1158
Hours: 8:00 a.m. to sunset
Heublein Tower Hours: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Price: Free
http://directory.hartford.cbslocal.com/directory/listing/100/7828-Talcott-Mountain-State-Park

One of the best hikes in the greater Hartford area can be found at Talcott Mountain State Park in Simsbury. The trek up the Tower Trail is an easy to moderate hike, and the view from the top is worth every step. Once hikers reach the summit of the trail, they will enjoy an incredible view stretching to the Berkshire Mountains.

Another perk of the Tower Trail is a visit to Heublein Tower at the top, which can also be toured during the hours of 10am – 5pm. The Tower was built by Gilbert Heublein in 1914 as a summer home.

shenipsitsoapstoneview Top Spots For Hikes

Photo Credit: CT Gov

Soapstone Mountain – Shenipsit State Forest
166 Chestnut Hill Rd.
Stafford Springs, CT 06067
(860) 684-3430
Park Hours: One half hour before sunrise – one half hour after sunset
Park Admission:Free
http://directory.hartford.cbslocal.com/directory/listing/100/2542-Shenipsit-State-Forest

For a great day hike in the Tolland County area, a visit to the Shenipsit State Forest on RT 190 is just the ticket. The Blue-Blazed Shenipsit Trail is an easy hike for all ages, and takes hikers to the top of Soapstone Mountain. The observation tower at the top stands where an original fire tower for the area used to be. Views from Springfield to the Connecticut River Valley can be observed from this point.

paugnutsf Top Spots For Hikes

Photo Credit: CT Gov

Bear Mountain
RT 41
Salisbury, CT 06068
Hours: Sunrise to Sunset
Price: Free
Directions: http://www.berkshirehiking.com/hikes/bearmt_salisbury.html

For avid hikers, Bear Mountain is probably the best bet in Connecticut, as it is the toughest climb around the state. For those who are up for the challenge, Bear Mountain is the highest peak in Connecticut, at 2,316 feet. The hike is a good 5-6 miles round trip, and features an old stone tower at the top providing amazing views of the Connecticut landscape.

Mary Fischer lives in Ellington, CT with her 5-year old son and husband of almost 8 years. She is the owner and author of a popular parenting blog, called The Mommyologist, where she features articles all about the changes in life that go along with being a parent.

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