29.5 acres in Mansfield, CT
Parking: Small lot near 266 Gurleyville Rd Mansfield, CT
The Torrey Preserve has just under one mile of trails. This hike starts out along the blue-blaze Nipmuck Trail for a few hundred feet before an arrow directs you west. The trail quickly comes into view of a 3 acre agricultural field. The trail crosses an access road to the field as is slowly climbs uphill. At the backside of the field the trail turns uphill at a shagbark hickory quickly gaining elevation now until rounding a small knob of rock. The trail is cut into the slope here and descends next to a fern glade and its unseen water source. Much of the property is hemlock grove. After leaving the field the trails heads into a gully before rejoining the Nipmuck trail to return to the parking area.
This hike can be combined with either section of the Nipmuck Trail for a longer hike either north towards the Fenton Tract or south towards the Gurleyville Gristmill.
The property became a town park in 1996 when it was purchased for $90,000. It is the site of the former Bundy Homestead, the ruins of which can be found in the eastern corner of the property. The property was owned by James Bundy Jr who had 70 acres in the area as early as 1751. The property was in the Torrey family for 74 years before its purchase by the town.
Peter Marteka – A Peaceful Visit to Mansfield’s Torrey Preserve and the Banks of the Fenton River (2019)