Sky’s The Limit # 11: Peoples State Forest

If you want to check on the hikes that I completed so far as part of this challenge, go here.

Prologue: A hiking challenge is going on this year by the Department of Environmental Protection (DEEP) in the state of Connecticut where I live, “Sky’s The Limit”. We have to finish a hike in the chosen 20 Park and Forest locations before December 3rd this year Each location has some specific points of interest that the departments asks us to take pictures of and document them. Most of the Parks and Forests are located in an hours of driving distance, except a few. I decided to take this challenge and hopefully will be able to complete all of them. Here we go!

Next up is Peoples State Forest. This is # 11 on the list provided by DEEP. I am not following the order they have listed. I am just going to any hike I can whenever I can from that list. 🙂

The last two hikes remaining in the challenge came around the time of Halloween. So we decided to make hiking of Peoples State Forest as a Halloween Hike. Undoubtedly we dressed accordingly – me in an Halloween appropriate costume (more like a dress with Halloween print) and my friend in Halloween colors. Again the hike was a day after a downpour making the entire nature all the more brighter and shinier.

Peoples State Forest is in the Pleasant Valley section in the town of Barkhamsted, Connecticut. The forest was established in 1924 through the efforts of the Connecticut Forest and Park Association which coordinated subscriptions for donations. The West Branch of Farmington River flows through the forest giving way to several recreational activities for everyone to enjoy other than hiking, such as – trout fishing; canoeing; kayaking; tubing; hunting; camping; and many winter sports.

We took the Blue Trail to Blue / Red Trail – Agnes Bowen Trail – with a loop hike within from the Pavilion to the Boardwalk in between. We began the unblazed road up to the Nature Center first.

The Nature Center offered several interesting points including this bird box and the tree trunks converted to seating area.

The West Branch of Farmington River flowed through the entire trail in little eddies and pools here and there.

We came across several of these wooden footbridges on the way – not only to protect the smaller flora and fauna, but also to give a hiking path during heavy rains as we had the day we went.

We saw a demonstration charcoal mound on the trail where up to 30 cords of wood were plied high, covered with dirt and leaves, and cooked slowly from within for two weeks to approx 30 bushels of charcoal.

We went on to the Boardwalk, checked out the viewing platform looking out into the wetlands.

As always the fall colors made a pretty backdrop for our photos.

After the hike we drove to visit the Saville Dam, a 73 year old earthen embankment dam with masonry work on the eastern branch of the Farmington River, creating the Barkhamsted Reservoir. The river across the dam made a beautiful horseshoe bend.

A fun Halloween hike venturing in the beautiful Peoples State Forest; and a mini photo shoot a Saville Dam completed the hike for us. One more to go to finish the challenge and I am glad we could incorporate Halloween into the mix.

2 thoughts on “Sky’s The Limit # 11: Peoples State Forest

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