Cabin fever has hit. Hard.
I've enjoyed my time ice skating with my husband and children on a frozen pond, and even had few chances to read sitting by our fireplace, but when it comes to alone time, nothing can replace the tranquil feeling that comes from being on a trail. So why not go?
I recently found myself back at the Ruby-Fenton Park & Wildlife Preserve in Willington. I’d enjoyed my hike there last May and knew that it was flat enough, with just a few hills, for me to enjoy my first foray into the woods with my snowshoes this winter season.
I brought with me my trusty boot crampons (a contraption you can add to your boot sole to give you a better grip on slick surfaces) as well as snowshoes; the conditions of the trails would determine which I’d use. Oh, and my trekking poles, too.
Let me tell you, it is just as great of a trip in the winter as it was in the spring. I took the Taylor Pond Trail to Julia’s Trail to create a longer loop. There were a few areas that were not snow covered, making it a bit difficult with snowshoes, but those bare spots were few and far between.
I was the only one on the trail until the end of my trip when I met a woman and her two Labrador retrievers on the road leading to the trail heads.
While I enjoyed myself in Willington, there are plenty of great places to go snowshoeing in eastern and central Connecticut.
Consider the list provided by the Connecticut tourism bureau. It includes locations throughout the state, including one my favorites, Northwest Park in Windsor, where you can rent snowshoes for the day if you don’t have your own. (The information is included under the Sports of Winters Past section.)
Yahoo! Sports put together this list of the top five places in Connecticut to take your snowshoes and hit the trails, including Holcomb Farm in Granby.
The Examiner.com recommends Winding Trails in Farmington, but before you go, call ahead to make sure the trails are open, and bring your own snowshoes.
Patch editors from throughout the region recommended these locations as great places to hit the trails in the snow:
- The MDC Reservoir in West Hartford
- Rockledge Golf Course in West Hartford has marked trails available for cross-country skiing or snowshoeing
- The Bolton-Vernon-Manchester on the Rails to Trails system
- Gay City State Park in Hebron
- Canton Land Conservation Trust Trails offers a great variety of trails
- Timberlin Golf Course in Berlin
- Connecticut College Arboretum in New London
- Shenipsit State Forest in Somers and Ellington
- Valley Falls Park in Vernon
- Crandall Park in Tolland
- McCann Family Farm in Somers
- Nearly any of the trails included in the Middletown Trail Guide
On the side:
Don’t forget about the Winter Trails Day sponsored by Connecticut Forest & Parks Association on Feb. 9.