266 acres in Somers, CT
Parking: Small lot near 55 Wells Rd Somers, CT
Trail Map Trails: 4.2 miles Rating: ★★★☆☆
Whitaker Woods is the most fragrant hike I’ve ever been on. That’s not a word I expect to use when writing about hiking, but scents pervaded much of these woods thanks to the ferns carpeting both sides of the trail. Compact ones fading to the color of straw all the way up to chest high ferns right out of the Jurassic Period. The scents were sweet but also rich and earthy and changed with the landscape and the different ferns.
I hiked the outer most loop of the woods from white to orange to white again. After heading down a short hill next to the parking lot the trail crosses Gulf Stream which is rated highly for its cleanliness. Taking the outer white loop climbs a long, at times strenuous, hill for about a the third of the loop.
Both ends of the 0.4 mile blue Underhill Trail looked interesting, but I kept hiking through the fall foliage until reaching the orange 0.9 mile Upper Shady Brook Trail. I bet this area gets particularly wet in the spring (my spring 2022 confirms this, much of the loop was very wet), but Shady Brook was bone dry during the early Fall 2020 drought. The trail skirts the base of a large hill along the property’s border before returning to the white trail amidst pines.
This section also has a connection to the adjacent McCann Family Farm trails, but I saved those for a later exploration. The two can be combined for nearly 8 miles of trails.
Hikes can also be extended by heading south on the Yellow Diamond trail which connects all the way to Soapstone Mountain trail network.
The Town of Somers and the Northern Connecticut Land Trust combined to purchase the property for $1.2 million in 2006.
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Last updated April 1st, 2022
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