Ledyard, CT, USA
Today's adventure takes you to a lovely loop track in a little wood in Ledyard, which is not at all well known. However, there is always something of interest to see here at any time of year, especially for the attentive. Please be subtle and discreet when finding and stamping the boxes. You do not need to take more than two steps off the trail to find them.
Although there are some streams to cross, we have done so without getting our feet wet (though early spring may be muddier).
Park your car in Mt Vernon Drive. The entrance is on the other side of the intersection, across the road to the left.
Walk into the meadow (NNW) and cross diagonally at 32 degrees through the grove. Enter the woods at 5 degrees. The trail is marked with yellow dots, and there is a cedar on the right. There is another entrance to the left, also marked with yellow dots, but that will be your exit. For now, take the right trail. Follow the yellow dots as the trail bend to the right.
When you come across a pile of boulders on your right, turn left and follow the yellow blazed trail. Descend into a wooded valley at 13 degrees. Cross an old river bed - you might need to take a few steps upstream to find a good crossing point. Once you're back on the trail, admire the lovely tree on the right with swirly bark. The trail then bends right.
Step across another small stream - see how it goes underground making a natural bridge? The trail is now bearing west and then turns right, going into a grove of beech (for once, not covered in graffiti). Continue following the dots, and before long you should begin to hear traffic.
Walk along with the stream on your left for a few steps. The trail then bends away from the stream to the right. As you near the road, the trail veers left. Follow the trail along the road edge, then follow it back into the woods downhill.
Ford the little stream anyway you can. When we were here in winter, there were awesome icicles clinging to the laurel branches overhanging the stream. The trail goes a few steps left then uphill.
When you get to the top of the hill, follow along the edge of the wall (the wall will be on your right side). On the right you will see a large flat rock overlooking the stream at about 330 degrees. Stop and admire the view.
Continue up the path through laurel, following the wall (on your right). The trail then veers away from the wall slightly at 142 degrees. Continue on and up, zigging and zagging as you go. At the top there is a glacial erratic on the right.
Past the erratic to the right the path goes through a forest (215 degrees). This forest is going through regeneration after a fire. Meet up with the wall again and veer left. Charred stumps are scattered amongst the new growth.
The path veers away from the wall again. At the top, spy an erratic to the right, then go downhill to your left. Follow the wire fence on your right until you walk into the meadow. Turn left and spy the trail going into the woods, marked by a cedar and a rock wall. Pass through the rock wall then turn around. The first box is in the base of the rock wall to your right, at the base of a birch tree.
Continue down the trail to the right, passing through lovely mountain laurels, following the yellow dots. As you meander through the valley, you'll need to do some more puddle-jumping across some streams. Then walk through more mountain laurel, zigging and zagging along the trail.
Across one last stream and up the hill to the right, you should see a familiar outlook. Stand on the rock facing the path, and look down to your right in the wall. Two rocks in, you will see a gap. Hiding under the bark is your prize. We hope you enjoyed this walk through such a pretty, unspoiled area.
Please email us if the box needs attention. Thanks to the wonderous Butterfly for looking after this box so lovingly, and for recarving the stamp when it went missing - big hugs!!
Friday, 27 May 2011 03:07 PM
Before you set out, please read the waiver of responsibility and disclaimer.