Spring Fever  LbNA # 7354 (ARCHIVED)

Placed DateMar 7 2004
LocationVernon, CT
Found By Flutterby Flew By
Last Found Feb 18 2007
Hike Distance?


We’re tired of winter so we cooked out on the grill and planted some letterboxes!

This is a relatively short, easy hike (although the trail is uneven and has lots of tree roots), starting from the Hockanum River Linear Park on Dart Hill Road just off Route 83N in Vernon (Dart Hill Road runs between Panda Palace and the new Walgreens, about 2 milles north of I84). You will take your first right after the Walgreens parking lot (before Dart Hill Road starts to curve). Once you park you will head to the trail at the southwest corner of the parking lot. This trail is a perfect example of nature in the midst of suburbia and there are plenty of picnic tables to enjoy your lunch or just relax.

Follow the trail and take a moment to walk out on the floating dock and enjoy the Hockanum River before you continue on the trail. At the top of the first hill you will see a tree with an orange trail marker and another tree right behind with three markers…you’re on the right track. Soon the trail seems to ‘T’ and you will follow it to the left. The trail then bears right and parallels the river. Soon you will come to a small tributary (does the Hockanum River have “tributaries”?) that you’ll have to hop across. After a short distance the trail will become a rock trail and then you’ll have to go over a fallen trunk from a tree just to the left of the path in order to continue your journey.

The path then becomes somewhat raised and, watch your step! Three large, sister roots will try to trip you! Cross the wooden footbridge (you’ll see an apartment complex on your right and a little farther down on the left you’ll notice the river seems to fork) and pause at the “fork” of the river. Across the river you’ll see two blue houses; the house on the left has a pool and the house on the right is the St. Louis Family Ranch with their faithful “steed”, Feebee! Wave and say hello! You will come to a swimming pool (yes, a swimming pool!) and go left and then right around the pool’s fence and back onto the trail.

At this corner of the fence, begin counting about 65 paces (each step = one pace) and at the right edge of the trail you will see a large tree with a younger sibling on the left and even younger twins on the right. As you approach the sibs, you’ll notice another shy sibling hiding behind the group. At the bottom of all these younger siblings is your first box. Please replace box with care!

You may continue on the trail as you wish, but eventually you will go back the way you came, and about two-thirds of the way back from the first box you’ll notice a wide, unmarked trail on your left that will very soon lead to a dirt and gravel bike path (from the apartment complex). Go right on that path and follow it to the first set of picnic tables you see. The far table sits on a concrete pad and your second box is under the southwest corner of that platform.

From here you can enjoy the rest of the bike path (it was getting dark so we couldn’t follow it to see where it went) or return to the Hockanum River Linear Park trail.

Down with winter! Yay for Spring!!