Moween State Park
577 acres in Lebanon, CT
Parking: Small pull off at 166 Camp Mooween Rd, Lebanon, CT
Outdated Trail Map Trails: 3 to 11 miles (depending on hiking or MTB) Rating: ★★★☆☆
Moween State Park is a park full of possibilities with trails for hiking, an extensive mountain biking network, and fishing or boating on the lake. Moween, a Mohegan word for bear, is a former summer camp and its ruins dot the landscape along the hiking paths.
Moween State Park has at least three miles of hiking trails that include footpaths as well as former gravel roads. The main feature is the 133 acre Red Cedar Lake that is great for boating and very popular for fishing. The foundations of buildings from a summer camp for boys can be found in the woods and along the shore. The area is actively hunted during season, hikers are cautioned to wear bright clothing.
The trails are well traveled enough to be easy to follow despite confusing trail blazes. There seems to be at least two green blazed trails and another green/white trail.
The trails have expanded beyond the outdated trail map thanks to dedicated work from local MTB groups. They now total at least 9 miles of mountain bike singletrack rated from intermediate to expert. It is well reviewed by bikers and is popular for group rides throughout the week. The GPS tracked map above shows the twists and turns of the entire loop. It does make for great mountain biking or trail running but isn’t as fun for hiking.
Fishing / Boating
Red Cedar Lake is 127 acres and up to 20′ deep. There are reports of bass and pickerel. I often seen people fishing along the shore. ‘Kayak with Lou’ says that paddling the lake isn’t very interesting and recommends nearby Williams Pond.
Established as a state park in 1989 it was originally known as Red Cedar Lake State Park.
The property is mostly former agricultural land that surrounds a parcel known as Camp Moween (a former summer camp for boys). The park’s name was changed to Moween State Park when the now-grown campers lobbied successfully to change the name in honor of their “summer paradise”.
- Mountain Bike Project – Moween State Park
- Kayaking with Lou – Red Cedar Lake State Park (archive link 2014)
- Peter Marteka – A Trail of Memories in Lebanon (2008)
- Peter Marteka – Old Camp Stirs Thoughts Of Summer (2004)