Nipmuck Trail – Rt. 89 Crossing
1.33 miles in Mansfield, CT
Parking: Across Rt. 89 at 174 Warrenville Rd Mansfield, CT
Trail Map Trails: 1.3 miles Rating: ★★☆☆☆
2021 Update: The northern bridge was washed out and damaged by summer flooding and has been removed. As of May 2022 it has not been repaired/replaced so the Nipmuck Trail has been relocated to the blue/white trail.
Though still within Mansfield Hollow State Park property I decided to split out this popular section of the Nipmuck Trail. It is 1.33 miles from Rt. 89 to Chaffeeville Rd and an optional loop addition with the 1 mile blue/white trail.
After crossing Rt. 89 the Nipmuck Trail slopes down to cross Schoolhouse Brook as it leaves the Fenton River and passes under a massive earthen dam towards Schoolhouse Brook Park. This section of trail is also part of the 5 mile yellow blazed loop around Mansfield Hollow Lake that I have trail run many times.
The main point of interest along this section are the twin Warren Pony truss bridges that allow the trail to cross the Fenton River. The southern bridge dates back to 1901 and was originally on Mount Hope Rd moving to its current location in 1999. The northern bridge dates back to 1914 and was originally on Cider Mill Rd before moving in 1997. In September 2021 the northern bridge was washed out by flooding and has been removed which also removes the nice short loop hike in this area. From here the trail narrows considerably as it follows the bank edge of the Fenton river until turning uphill to reach Chaffeeville Rd.
The blue/white trail is poorly blazed but easy to follow and mainly passes through thick woods. There are also unblazed connections to the Dorwart Preserve and Mansfield’s newest park the Southworth Preserve for longer explorations.
This section is also part of the Nipmuck South Trail Race (14.1 miles) organized by the Shenipsit Striders which has been running for the past 30 years.
Next Section: Fifty Foot Cliff
Previous Section: Mansfield Hollow
The trail crosses two truss bridges built by the Berlin Construction Co. in 1901.
Peter Marteka – The Ghost Bridges of Mansfield Hollow (2012)
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Last updated April 15th, 2022
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