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2016-11-26  
Saugatuck - Trout Brook Loop, CT
mini location map2016-11-26
13 by photographer avatarchumley
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Saugatuck - Trout Brook Loop, CT 
Saugatuck - Trout Brook Loop, CT
 
Hiking avatar Nov 26 2016
chumley
Hiking17.02 Miles 2,759 AEG
Hiking17.02 Miles   5 Hrs   8 Mns   3.39 mph
2,759 ft AEG      7 Mns Break
 
1st trip
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The difference between trails out west and those back east is that trails out west were built for a purpose ... they get the user from point a to point b in the most efficient way. Back east, the trails are built on a confined parcel of land with the purpose of stringing together as many miles as possible despite the boundaries within which the trails must be built.

So, somehow this little loop around a reservoir that is barely 3.5 miles long and never more than 3/4 of a mile wide somehow ends up being 17 miles. :o I knew this ahead of time -- to an extent -- but it still ended up being about 3 miles more than I was figuring. It is maddening when the trail zigzags and horseshoes from point to point for no reason and you realize you were just 20 feet from here 5 minutes ago, and there's really no natural obstacle to prevent the trail from just taking the most direct route!

Nonetheless, Saugatuck is a winner. It crosses a lightly-traveled road a few times, but winter views of the reservoir are nice. In summer it would be a wooded, shaded forest seemingly in the middle of nowhere. There is something nice about the leaves off the trees that lets you see a lot more than what you can in summer.

I'd like to hit the Aspetuck Trail one day ... it continues north 10 or 12 miles from the end of the Saugatuck Trail. But I turned south on Black Rock Tpke for half a mile to the Trout Brook Preserve trails where I ran into my two brothers, nieces and nephews just as they were finishing up a hike of their own. (I had opted not to go for the easier family hike, but it was a nice surprise that somehow we managed to cross paths here.)

Trout Brook is amazingly over-signed, but at this point, I was pretty happy about that. Finding trails after the leaves have fallen had proven to be just a little challenging all day, and I was ready to be done. White to Red to Salmon, and back out on Valley Forge. I stopped for a few minutes at Devils Glen -- a nice gorge that the Saugatuck River flows through and features some great swimming holes and cliff diving in warmer weather. Another short road walk got me back to the car. I was glad to be able to make a big loop out of this one. I'll have to come back and check out more of the trails in Trout Brook Valley.

I'll probably find some of my golf balls from yesteryear. Lord knows I lost plenty into those woods off the 14th hole!
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chumley's
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