June is “Busting Out All Over” With Outdoor Opportunities


June is “Busting Out All Over” With Outdoor Opportunities

We’re on the cusp of June, and before you know it the summer solstice will arrive with the warmth and heat of the season. If you’re looking to get outdoors and experience countless and diverse locations in The Last Green Valley for enjoying nature, here are Ranger Bill’s suggestions.

TLGV’s Spring Outdoors program continues until the summer solstice June 21. We have hikes, paddles, mountain biking, concerts, 10K and 30K trail runs, tours and more.

There are a handful of Spring Outdoors events scheduled over the next month that caught my eye, and I hope you find them interesting too.

On May 28 Andy Rzeznikiewicz of Connecticut Audubon will lead an early morning bird walk starting at 8 a.m. The walk is located at the Connecticut Audubon Center, 218 Day Road, Pomfret. It is free to Audubon Center members and $5 for non-members. From experience I can assure you that with Andy as your guide you will see a variety of bird species.

On May 29 at the James L. Goodwin State Forest and Conservation Center, 23 Potter Road, Hampton, from 6 – 8 p.m. you can “Walk Among the Ashes,” where a managed prescribed burn was done by DEEP’s Division of Forestry. Come take a walk through the burn sites with DEEP foresters Kevin Grady and Rich Schenk to learn more about how prescribed burns are done, why and where they are recommended and what the beneficial results are.

On June 1 Jeff Stefanik of the Wyndham Land Trust will lead a hike at the trust’s Bull Hill Forest Project from 10 – 11:30 am. The hike starts at the end of Bull Hill Road in Woodstock, located off Senexet Road. The parcel of land is diverse, historic and offers wonderful views.

For history buffs, the Norwich Historical Society is holding one of their popular Second Saturday Tours – the Aaron Dwight Stevens Walk from 10 – 11 a.m. June 8. The walk starts at 69 East Town Street in Norwich and focuses on Lisbon-born and Norwich-raised Aaron Dwight Stevens, who led the historic raid at Harper’s Ferry, Virginia with John Brown.

For more information about these hikes and walks, and to find the full list of Spring Outdoors activities go to the TLGV website and click on the Spring Outdoors link and download the Spring Outdoors calendar. https://thelastgreenvalley.org/explore-the-last-green-valley/spring-outdoors/

Next weekend, June 1 and 2 is CT Trails Weekend, organized by the Connecticut Forest and Park Association. Numerous organizations and individuals offer hikes and paddles throughout the state and the weekend is the perfect opportunity to get out and enjoy the great outdoors. The first Saturday in June is also National Trails Day with many states and organizations offering up hikes, however, Connecticut has the largest event of its kind in the country.

TLGV has participated in this weekend for many years, and I will be leading a hike June 1 at Old Furnace State Park and a Quinebaug River Paddle June 2nd. For a complete listing of CT Trails Day hikes visit the CFPA website at: https://www.ctwoodlands.org/ct-trails-weekend/events-2019

One of the hikes I would gladly attend June 1 if I wasn’t leading my own is the Bob Mancini Memorial Hike on the Nipmuck Trail in Ashford from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mancini blazed this section of the Nipmuck Trail and maintained it for 40 years. The hike is being led by his daughter, Lee Fitzgerald, and friend, Alan Nordell. The trail travels through the Yale Forest, crossing old woods roads, seasonal brooks and through stands of mountain laurel. There is a limit of 25 hikers, so you’ll want to sign up soon. This hike is listed in both the Spring Outdoors and CFPA Trails Weekend guides and you can find the information to register in both.

June will soon be busting with opportunities to get outdoors and experience this beautiful place we call home, The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor. Join me as we care for, enjoy and pass it on.

Bill Reid is the Chief Ranger of The Last Green Valley National Heritage Corridor and has lived in the region for more than 35 years. He can be reached at bill@tlgv.org



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