Sierra Club Connecticut Chapter - Greater Hartford Group


Monthly Meetings:

Meetings are held at Westmoor Park on the second Thursday of the month.  There are no meetings in July and August.  All meetings and outings are open to members and the general public.  New members are especially welcome.  Refreshments are served but please bring your own coffee mug.

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GREATER HARTFORD SIERRA CLUB OUTINGS MAY THROUGH August 2015

Free outings open to club members and the public. RSVP yes only here providing cell phone should weather require a change. Please, no cell phone use or smoking on these outings.  Safety vests required when kayaking.

Kayak Mansfield Hollow, Saturday 5/30, 10am (Mansfield, CT) (rescheduled from earlier date). 

Meet at 10am at the state boat launch on Bassett Bridge Road, Mansfield, CT.  No fee to launch and free parking.  We'll paddle this 460 acre reservoir created by the damning of the Natchaug River.  Great diversity of scenery and birds.  

Map of trip available at: http://www.bostonkayaker.com/cgi-bin/bkonekpage.cgi?pagekey=mansfieldhollow We’ll go through a small culvert on the right that leads to the other half of the reservoir. This place is bigger than it looks and includes the dam and a river to investigate.  After we paddled that side, we’ll come back through the culvert and may head out to the other side of the lake with two inlet rivers at the far end.   RSVP by 5/29.

Hike Penwood State Park, Sunday, May 31st 10am (Simsbury, CT)
Let's walk  Penwood State Park on Sunday, May 31st at 10am.  Meet at the parking lot just off the Rte. 185 park entrance.  We wait no more than ten minutes for latecomers and then we are off!  Please RSVP yes only by Saturday May 30th.  If you say YES and change your mind, please let me know in case you were the only one so I can hike nearer home instead.  You can mapquest/GPS Stafford Street and Hartford Road intersection in Simsbury, CT for a close site to park entrance.

Directions: Rte. 91 to exit 35B, Rte. 218 west. Take 218 until you reach Rte. 189 north in Bloomfield.  Turn right onto Rte. 189 and continue north to Rte. 178.  Turn left onto 178 proceed to end where it intersects with Rte. 185.  Turn right onto Rte. 185.  Ahead about a mile on the right is park entrance.  Friendly dogs are welcome but they must be leashed when others approach us.  Messes on the trail must be removed.  All hikers, adults and children over 10 years of age, and with or without dogs are welcome as long as they refrain from cell phone use and smoking.

RAIN THAT DAY CANCELS.


Hike Bolton Notch Pond, Saturday, 6/13 10am (Bolton, CT)

Let’s walk the rail to trail at Bolton Notch Pond. We meet 10:00am at the Shady Glen restaurant, 840 Middle Turnpike East, Manchester, on Rte. 6 on the Manchester / Bolton line. Directions: Rte. I-84 E to Rte. 384 E, exit 5, Rte. 85.  End of ramp turn left.  Go up and down hill to a light.  That is Rte. 6.  Turn left.  Restaurant c. 1.5 miles ahead on left. Friendly dogs are welcome to run as we walk but must be leashed as others approach us.  Messes on the trail must be removed.  All adults and children  over 10 years old are welcome.  RAIN CANCELS.  RSVP by 6/12.

Kayak Essex Cove and Turtle Creek, Sunday 6/14, 10am (Essex, CT).

Meet at the town of Essex Kayak/Canoe launch off Teal Road just north of the town center. We’ll paddle to the island opposite the museum and into Turtle Creek Cove off the CT River. Plus cross the river seeking eagles on the island. This lush Nature Conservancy property is a a tidal estuary whose channel supports wild rice and eel grass in bracken tidal marshes.  In May it’s blooming amid mountain laurel thickets and beech groves.  

Directions: For GPS use 1 Teal Lane, Essex. Take Rte. 9 to exit 3, Rte. 154, then left onto West Avenue, veering left onto N. Main Street and immediate right onto Bushnell Street where you see a marina. Go left onto Teal Lane. Grassy parking lot and easy put in setup for kayaks/canoes.  Bring lunch to enjoy in boat and/or we can hit the town for supper.   RSVP by 6/13.


Kayak Great Island Wildlife Area, Satuday, 6/20, 10am (Old Lyme, CT).

Meet at the Great Island state Boat Launch, Smith Neck Road, Old Lyme.  We will explore the secluded back channels, side rivers, and coves that parallel the lower Connecticut River near the mouth on the east side, winding through 10-foot-tall marsh reeds in one of CT’s largest brackish tidal marshes and a barrier beach that teem with birdlife especially at this premigration feeding period.  You can access a guide to this area at: http://www.crerpa.org/RiverandSound/oldlymetrail.pdf

Directions: From the East: Take I-95 South to Exit 70. At the end of the exit ramp, turn left onto Lyme Street and proceed .8 miles. Next, turn right onto Ferry Road, and continue 0.3 miles. Turn left onto Route 156/Shore Road and proceed 1.3 miles. Turn right onto Smith Neck Road and follow .7 miles (to its end).

From the West: Take I-95 North to Exit 70. At the end of the exit ramp, turn right onto Route 156/Shore Road and continue 1.7 miles. Next, turn right onto Smith Neck Road, and proceed .7 miles (to its end).  Bring lunch to enjoy in boat and/or we can hit the town for supper.  RSVP by 6/19.


Kayak East River and Neck River, Saturday 6/27 10am (Madison, CT)

We’ll meet at the East River boat launch off. off Rte 1, Neck Road, and Circle Beach Road in Madision.  It's at the end of a rutted beach road.  Parking lot and access road are partially submerged at high tide but not enough to worry about. http://www.lisrc.uconn.edu/coastalaccess/site.asp?siteid=464 is DEEP web site with directions.

We'll head north up East River until it branches with the Neck River to the right.   Both have a lot of bird life easily visible on this quiet river water with surrounding marshes, until Bailey Creek veers off to the left.    RSVP by 6/26.


Kayak Bluff Point, Sunday, 6/28 10am (Groton, CT).

Meet at the state boat launch at 44 Depot Road, Groton.  No fee to launch and free parking. We’ll paddle in the vicinity of this 800-acre peninsula that includes the state park, a coastal reserve and natural preserve surrounded by Mumford Cove to the east, Fishers Island Sound to the south and the Poquonnock River to the west.   The shallow and protected open water is excellent for kayaking. We’ll paddle down the river then behind a large sandy peninsula with a 50’ portage if we wish to enjoy the beach and launch after from there to explore a couple harbor islands before returning to the original launch site.

Directions: Rte. 95 along the shore to Route 1, south on Depot Road, go under train trestle at the end.  Launch is at the end of the road to the west of the park entrance. /or we can hit the town for supper.  RSVP by 6/27.


Kayak Rainbow Reservoir and Farmington River, Friday 7/3 (work holiday) 10am (Windsor, CT).

Meet at boat launch at 118 Merriman Road, Windsor, CT.  No fee to launch and free parking. We’ll paddle the 243 acre reservoir that is tree lined with only a few houses set back from the water.  Then head up the Farmington River towards North Bloomfield and even Simsbury before returning to the launch site. Map of area and trip route at:  http://www.bostonkayaker.com/cgi-bin/bkonekpage.cgi?pagekey=farmingtonrainbow  RSVP by 7/2.

Kayak Gardner Lake Sunday 7/5 10am (Salem CT).

Meet at Gardner Lake state boat launch, 147 Old Colchester Road, Salem.   This is a 528 acre lake with many nooks to investigate.  Hopefully eagles will be there again as they were last year! Free launch and parking.  Plus there's a small beach area to swim and picnic after we paddle, so bring food and a swimsuit.

Directions: From the junction of Route 354 and Route 82 in Salem, proceed north on Route 354 for 0.1 mile and turn right into the boat launch area. Safety vests must be worn at all times. Please no cell phone use or smoking on the water.  RSVP by 7/3.


Hike Penwood State Park, Saturday, August 22nd 10am (Simsbury, CT)

Meet at the parking lot just off the Rte. 185 park entrance.  We wait no more than ten minutes for latecomers and then we are off! Please RSVP yes only by Friday, August 21st.  If you say YES and change your mind, please let me know in case you were the only one so I can hike nearer home instead. You can mapquest/GPS Stafford Street and Hartford Road intersection in Simsbury, CT for a close site to park entrance.

Directions: Rte. 91 to exit 35B, Rte. 218 west. Take 218 until you reach Rte. 189 north in Bloomfield.  Turn right onto Rte. 189 and continue north to Rte. 178.  Turn left onto 178 proceed to end where it intersects with Rte. 185.  Turn right onto Rte. 185.  Ahead about a mile on the right is park entrance.

Friendly dogs are welcome but they must be leashed when others approach us.  Messes on the trail must be removed. All hikers, adults and children over 10 years of age, and with or without dogs are welcome as long as they refrain from cell phone use and smoking.

RAIN THAT DAY CANCELS.


Kayak Pachaug Pond, Sunday, 8/23 10am, (Griswold, CT)

Meet at the Pachaug Pond boat launch, 945 Voluntown Road, Griswold, CT  We’ll paddle southward and back doing the perimeter of this 841 acre lake that is lightly populated for a quiet paddle.  It’s the largest CT public water body east of the CT River and has many fish to attract anglers.  Map of pond and this trip at: http://www.bostonkayaker.com/cgi-bin/bkonekpage.cgi?pagekey=pachaugpond

Directions: boat launch is at north end of pond off Rte. 138.  From central CT take Rte. 2 East to Rte. 395 North.  Take exit 85 for Rte. 164 toward CT-138/Preston City/Pachaug.  Go ahead .6 miles then turn right onto Rte. 138.  Boat ramp is 2.3 miles ahead.  If you reach Rte. 395 you’ve gone too far.   Bring lunch to enjoy in boat and/or we can hit the town for supper.   RSVP by 8/22



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