Skyline Scenic Area
65 acres in Somers, CT
Parking: Small pull-off near 312 Stafford Rd, Somers, CT
Trail Map Trails: 1.5 miles Rating: ★★☆☆☆
I tacked the Skyline Scenic area to the end of a long day of exploring around Somers thinking it would be a great sunset view at the end of the day. I hadn’t included it in my plans, but had enough time so I showed up to the trailhead with zero information about it. It turns out there is indeed a view and a 1.5 mile loop that climbs towards Minnechaug Mountain over the Massachusetts border.
From the trailhead kiosk the trail heads off to the left or right. I chose to head left. In reading after my hike the left trail is known as the Ledges Trail and is only a half mile to the viewpoint. The trail is well traveled and climbs through rocky outcrops and over thin cuts into steep hills. It’s a good steep climb through the forest. The overlook was admittedly underwhelming. There are a set of stones placed to form a bench to relax and enjoy the view, but with foliage on the trees it was only a narrow gap through the foliage but the colors at sunset were rich purple streaks. On my 2022 visit in early spring before everything fully leafed out the view was definitely better.
The NCLT website claims. “broad panoramic view across the Connecticut River Valley”. Peter Marteka is more accurate in March 2012 talking about openings with views of the Hanging Hills and the skylines of Hartford and Springfield. So I think the view is best in winter.
It was past sunset and I didn’t know how long the trail was so took off at a quick pace to continue the rest of the loop. This means I missed the two groups of mystery pits near the scenic lookout. I assumed I was near the Massachusetts border and hoped to see some kind of marker, but didn’t. A rough unblazed trail leaves the northeast corner of the nature preserve and connects up to Minnechaug Mountain in Massachusetts but it is on private property and shouldn’t be followed.
As the forest grew darker and darker I picked up the pace to a jog. Off the yellow blazed trail there are several unblazed paths that head off in different directions, some likely interconnect the loop and one further south well past the parking area. I was able to catch the large erratic boulder and made it back to the car in semi-darkness.
Peter Marteka – A Visit To Northern Connecticut’s Scenic Three-State Skyline (2012)
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Last updated September 28th, 2020
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