“A beautiful singletrack trail skirting the shores and ridgelines of Saugatuck Reservoir.”
— Tom Robson
Birding · Fall Colors · Lake · River/Creek · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife
This trail, like most in CT, is full of rocks and roots.
From Black Rock Turnpike (Rte. 58), the Saugatuck Trail (blue blazes) heads west, trending mostly downhill. From its inception until it turns north, the trail bounces around vernal ponds and across multiple small bridges. Keep an eye out, especially in spring, for the CT state flower, the Mountain Laurel. It shouldn't be hard to miss...
At ~1.3 miles, the trail begins to contour trending north as it rises and falls over the reservoir's granite-laden topography. Continue to follow the blue blazes as they eventually lead you to an awesome overlook resplendent with a bench to picnic at! This is the perfect place for a quick snack. After taking in enough of the view, the trail skirts the reservoir north, offering plentiful views along the way.
Once you've crossed a well-built bridge with hand rails, the trail begins to trend upwards after lulling you into a false sense of ease. You'll soon pop out onto Newtown Turnpike (Rte. 53) after crossing a larger bridge. Cross the road (beware of cars!) and follow the stone steps to a sharp left-hand turn that throws you directly back into the woods.
From here, the trail begins its most difficult climb, twisting its way to a stunning overlook at the north end of the reservoir. Take in the views and enjoy a well-earned rest, the climb is still not over... From here, the trail follows a serpentine path that will finally bring you to its high-point and an intersection. Unless you're headed to the parking area on Deer Hill Road, follow the blue blazes southwest, eventually reaching an intersection with Universal Access Connector
From this intersection, the trail crosses Rte. 53 (watch for cars!) and dives south. Good work, you're over halfway done with the trail!
Continue south as Saugatuck Trail undulates steeply both up and down, eventually passing Tudor Road. The parking area found on this spot has a restroom, the first you'll have encountered on this journey.
From here, the trail continues to closely follow the reservoir's shoreline south. Be careful at each road crossing as there are five more to tackle: Newtown Turnpike (Rte. 53) three times, Valley Forge once, and Godfrey Road. From Godfrey Road, it's a short distance to the trail's terminus at Davis Hill Road!
Flora & Fauna
Don't pass up the chance to admire the mountain laurel (the CT state flower) as well as Beech.