Bent of the River Sanctuary
700 acres in Southbury, CT
Parking: Medium sized lot near 185 E Flat Hill Rd, Southbury, CT
Trail Map Trails: Rating: ★★☆☆☆
I visited the Bent of the River on a 94 degree day in July. Parking is next to a sun soaked meadow filled with flowers of all kinds, birds and butterflies flitted about.
I started off on the River Trail through what appears to be a covered bridge that serves as the trailhead kiosk. The trail follows the edge of the meadow along the river until it enters the trees. There is a large sculpture resting area and access to the river, though they prohibit fishing.
Beyond that is a raised boardwalk above a sea of ferns which shortly leads to the barn and gardens. The barn was closed during my visit though the gardens were well kept by the Southbury Gardening Club.
I took Pootatuck Rd north and crossed paths with a tractor who had just been doing a bit of trail maintenance. I took the overlook trail to a very lackluster overlook. There is only a tiny peek of a view (at least in the summer) that left me underwhelmed.
Things went downhill from here (both literally and figuratively). Looping back I found that nearly every other trail is closed.
- Cascade Tap (side trail to The Cascade, off of Cascade Trail)
- Eagle Overlook Trail
- Howard’s Run
- Manquash Gap
- Mitchell’s Farm Trail Loop
- Scalo’s Trail (aka Sachem Trail)
- South Pool Trail
I took the Tulip Tree trail back to Pootatuck Rd and the driveway back to the visitor parking. I think the trails are closed due to lack of maintenance, perhaps a storm caused a number of fallen trees. So while the first bit of the hike along the river was great the rest was a bit of a let down. I look forward to the trails reopening as they seem promising but, until then, there’s just a couple short options.
Opened to the public in 2000. Read a full history on the Audubon’s official page here.
Peter Marteka – A Trip To The ‘Bent’ Of The Pomperaug River (2014)
CTMQ – 137. Audubon at Bent of the River (2009)