Squantz Pond State Park Loop

Squantz Pond State Park Loop

Squantz Pond State Park Loop

April 2‎‎, ‎2023 – New Fairfield, Connecticut

Issue: Straightforward – Average

Size: Roughly 2.9 miles

Max elevation: 672 ft.– complete elevation acquire roughly 352 ft.

Route kind: Circuit

Map: Squantz Pond State Park trail map

Avenza Map: Squantz Pond State Park Avenza Trail Map

Trailhead parking: 178 Short Woods Rd, New Fairfield, CT 06812

Admission and Charges: Out-of-State Registered Automobile Charge from Memorial Day Weekend by way of Labor Day – $22.00 weekends, $15.00 weekdays. There is no such thing as a cost for Connecticut Registered Automobiles.

Pets will not be permitted within the park in the course of the summer time season from April 15 by way of September 30. Pets on a leash are permitted in picnic areas and on climbing trails from October 1 to April 14.

The park is open from 8am to sundown 12 months spherical and affords bogs and picnic tables. It’s an Alcohol-free park.

Squantz Pond State Park

Squantz Pond State Park


Park Overview:

Squantz Pond affords 4 season enjoyment with steep, wooded slopes, a cool, blue pond and colourful foliage to please guests all year long.

Squantz Pond immerses the customer in a “mountain like” setting. Steep, wooded slopes disappear into the cool, blue pond beneath. Within the fall, the park turns into a haven for photographers capturing the colourful reflection of the foliage within the mirrored floor of the water.

Squantz Pond

Squantz Pond

The state park encompasses 172 acres on the southwestern shore of 270-acre Squantz Pond, providing alternatives for boating, swimming, fishing, and climbing. The park is bordered on the west by Pootatuck State Forest and is managed by the Connecticut Division of Vitality and Environmental Safety.

Squantz Pond State Park

Squantz Pond State Park

The park additionally affords scuba diving in addition to a launch for motorized boating. The park additionally has canoe and kayak leases, picnicking amenities that embody anchored charcoal grills, and a nature heart. The park’s climbing trails grant entry to the adjoining Pootatuck State Forest.


Historical past:

In 1926 Squantz Pond was established as a state park by way of the acquisition of a 138-acre farm. The pond and state park are named for Chief Squantz, a pacesetter of the Schaghticoke tribe.


Trails Overview:

Squantz Pond State Park and Pootatuck State Forest include roughly 1,155 acres and provide the very best climbing in New Fairfield. There are some fantastic walks by way of magical mountain settings with breathtaking vistas, steep, wooded slopes, quickly flowing streams and lots of attention-grabbing rock formations (together with Council Rock), all straddling the cool blue waters of Squantz Pond. There are numerous miles of trails to discover and any variety of loop hikes will be finished.

Squantz Pond State Park trail map

Squantz Pond State Park path map

“A typical geological function all through the hike are massive boulder falls hugging the steep hillside so far as the attention can see upward and right down to the water’s edge. Along with stepping throughout and between boulders, the loop’s higher portion winds previous massive rock formations, a few of them modest caves.”
~ Steve Mirsky, Finest Straightforward Day Hikes: Fairfield County (Falcon Guides).

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

The paths will not be very effectively marked and the blazes are light all through each the White and Crimson trails, however for essentially the most half will be adopted particularly if utilizing the free model of the Avenza Maps app.

Trails used on this hike:

  • White Path~ Though the White Path follows the western shoreline of the pond, it entails many ups and downs over rocky terrain with some tree roots and blowdowns thrown in for good measure. There are good views of Squantz Pond from a number of spots alongside the path.
White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

  • Crimson Path~ The Crimson Path roughly parallels the White Path, however greater up on the ridge. It passes by way of an space with massive rock formations and excessive cliffs. Its southern terminus is at a Hearth Highway a bit of greater up on the ridge.
Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

  • Hearth Highway~ An unmarked extensive gravel street that descends to the south and ends at Shortwoods Highway.
Fire Road - Squantz Pond State Park

Hearth Highway – Squantz Pond State Park

  • Inexperienced/Teal~ I didn’t discover any blazes on this extensive grassy path. This path connects the Hearth Highway to the inside of the park. There’s a good view over the pond from the highest of the hill.
Green/Teal Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Inexperienced/Teal Path – Squantz Pond State Park


Hike Overview:

I visited Squantz Pond State Park in June of 2019 and the adjoining Pootatuck State Forest in July of 2021 and actually loved the realm. Making an attempt to rebound from some medical points, I used to be looking for out a spot the place I may do a brief loop with a little bit of elevation thrown in. I made a decision to pay this spot one other go to. Since I used to be acquainted with the lay of the land, this was a straightforward selection. It had sufficient ruggedness with out being too taxing.

This counterclockwise loop, is a slight variation from the hike that I did in 2019. It begins on the White Path which follows the shoreline, then climbs on the Crimson Path previous Council Rock and different attention-grabbing rock formations. It finishes on a Hearth Highway and a grassy path with views over Squantz Pond.

Squantz Pond State Park Loop

Squantz Pond State Park Loop

Beneath exhibits the various ups and downs of the hike, however no vital elevation acquire.

elevation profile - Squantz Pond State Park Loop

elevation profile – Squantz Pond State Park Loop


The Hike:

This hike begins on the southeastern parking space, however should you occur to park in a distinct lot, simply head north in direction of the seashore space of the lake and switch left (west), and comply with the shoreline. Close to the western shore of the pond, there’s a signal publish which often is the begin of the White Path, however I didn’t discover any blazes. Quickly you’ll descend some railroad tie steps and comply with a footpath alongside the sting of the pond. Descend one other set of railroad tie steps, cross a picket footbridge and switch proper.

Head north towards the beach area.

Head north in direction of the seashore space.

Squantz Pond beach area

Squantz Pond seashore space

Squantz Pond

Squantz Pond

Start of the White Trail?

Begin of the White Path?

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Squantz Pond

Squantz Pond

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Chances are you’ll start to see light white blazes now. The White Path heads north with Squantz Pond on the precise. The White Path is surprisingly rugged because it travels over undulating terrain. It passes by some massive boulders which are scattered close to the water. The warning indicators are on account of quite a few deaths on this space through the years from individuals diving from atop the boulders into the pond. In keeping with DEP data, 10 individuals have drowned at Squantz Pond since 1998. Many of the drownings have been linked to cliff diving and leaping.

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

The path continues to rise and fall because it travels over rocky terrain. A couple of mile from the beginning of the hike, the White Path reaches a rock outcrop with sweeping views of Squantz Pond. This can be a great spot for a break to absorb the surroundings.

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

The White Path climbs a bit of because it continues north. A brief distance later, the path descends to pond degree and arrives at a junction with the Crimson Path. This flip is straightforward to overlook so maintain a watch open for it.

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

White Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

White Path – Squantz Pond State Park

The Crimson Path climbs steeply then curves to the left and begins to move south, paralleling the White Path beneath. This space is scattered with jumbled boulders which have fallen down the mountain and is sort of scenic. On the time of our go to there have been quite a few fallen timber throughout the path that we needed to climb over, however nothing too tough. Just like the White Path, the Crimson Path travels over undulating terrain.

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail – Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

In just below 400 yards, the Crimson Path reaches Council Rock, an enormous spherical slab of rock that rests above different rocks forming a pure cover. In keeping with native traditions, the rock formation was a gathering place for the Schaghticoke tribe. Chief Squantz, who held sway over the Schaghticoke within the early 1700’s, may stand there, as if at a pulpit, and deal with a big gathering of his tribesmen.

Council Rock - Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Council Rock – Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

To achieve a greater perspective of the enormity of this rock formation, the picture beneath exhibits me standing in entrance of Council Rock.

Council Rock – Red Trail – Squantz Pond State Park

Council Rock – Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Council Rock - Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Council Rock – Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

The Crimson Path continues south by way of the various rock formations that line the path. There are numerous crevices that kind small caves all through this space and rock slab partitions. After about 0.6 mile from the beginning of the Crimson Path, it involves a junction with the Purple Path on the left. Bear proper at this junction to stay on the Crimson Path.

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Red Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Crimson Path – Squantz Pond State Park

In one other 280 toes or so, the Crimson Path ends at a Hearth Highway. Flip left on this gravel street and proceed in a southerly route because the street descends progressively. In about 0.3 mile, The Hearth Highway crosses a small bridge over a stream. Instantly after crossing this bridge, flip left on the Inexperienced/Teal Path. I didn’t discover any blazes, however this can be a extensive street (probably very muddy after rainfall) that heads east, again into the inside of the park. In case you miss this flip, the Hearth Highway ends at Quick Woods Highway simply up forward.

Fire Road - Squantz Pond State Park

Hearth Highway – Squantz Pond State Park

I believed that this boulder regarded like a frog, so I named it accordingly.

"Frog Rock" along the Fire Road

“Frog Rock” alongside the Hearth Highway

Fire Road - Squantz Pond State Park

Hearth Highway – Squantz Pond State Park

Fire Road - Squantz Pond State Park

Hearth Highway – Squantz Pond State Park

The beginning of this path is filth, however quickly turns right into a grassy mowed path. From the highest of the hill, there are good views of Squantz Pond.

Green/Teal - Squantz Pond State Park

Inexperienced/Teal – Squantz Pond State Park

Green/Teal Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Inexperienced/Teal Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Squantz Pond from the Green/Teal Trail

Squantz Pond from the Inexperienced/Teal Path

Squantz Pond from the Green/Teal Trail

Squantz Pond from the Inexperienced/Teal Path

The path continues round in direction of the entrance entrance to the park. Whenever you attain the Ticket Sales space, should you parked in the primary lot, proceed again to your car. In case you parked on the Boat Launch parking space, proceed throughout the grass area, again to the place the hike started.

Green/Teal Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Inexperienced/Teal Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Green/Teal Trail - Squantz Pond State Park

Inexperienced/Teal Path – Squantz Pond State Park

Ticket Booth - Squantz Pond State Park

Ticket Sales space – Squantz Pond State Park

Boat Launch parking area - Squantz Pond State Park

Boat Launch parking space – Squantz Pond State Park


Evaluation:

The paths are surprisingly rugged and scenic. We didn’t encounter every other hikers throughout our time on the paths, which was a pleasing shock. In case you want an extended hike, the paths join with these in Pootatuck State Forest, which is certainly price a go to as effectively. The paths do want some upkeep to clear the various downed timber that block the paths and a few contemporary paint on these light blazes. Additionally possibly paint some blazes nearer to the junctions to make them simpler to see. A beautiful park that’s price a go to.

Execs:

Scenic panorama, effectively maintained picnic areas with many anchored charcoal grills, historic options, Council Rock, Squantz Pond.

Cons:

Path blazes may use a contemporary coat of paint and a bit of upkeep to clear the quite a few blowdowns alongside the paths.


Take a hike!

Squantz Pond State Park Loop

Squantz Pond State Park Loop


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