Mansfield Hollow State Park
251 acres in Mansfield, CT
Parking: A number of lots and pull offs along Bassett’s Bridge Rd Mansfield Center, CT
Mansfield Hollow is a large and varied park that offers hiking, picnicking, and boating. It is also a popular gathering place for groups on the weekends and large events like the annual cyclocross race. There are over 16 miles of trails between the park and wildlife areas. This includes a nearly 8 mile section of the blue blazed Nipmuck Trail to its eastern terminus. Highlights of the trails include sections along Mansfield Hollow Lake, the Mount Hope and Fenton Rivers, and pine groves throughout.
Mansfield Hollow Lake/Reservoir
Mansfield Hollow also contains a 500-acre lake created by the Army Corps of Engineers that is great for boating and fishing. A large parking lot and boat launch are located along a bend of Bassett’s Bridge Rd.
Yellow Blazed Multi-Use Loop
Mountain biking and horseback riding are allowed on this trail that loops around the lake. It is my favorite trail in the park for trail running and is 5.2 miles total.
East of the Lake
This section of trails can be accessed from the small pull off just north of the boat launch or from the Nipmuck Trail East Terminus. The Nipmuck section here is a 2 mile hilly stretch with an overlook on the water. Mountain bike trails run along the waters edge and are some of the most secluded trails in the park. There is also an easy paved path (a road that ran through the hollow before it was turned into a lake) runs right to the water’s edge.
Established as a state park in 1952.
Peter Marteka – Kayak Allows New Looks at Hollow (2001)
Peter Marteka – The Ghost Bridges Of Mansfield Hollow (2012)