New England Trail
Field Road (Chittenden Park), Guilford, CT
(National Park Service, Connecticut Forest & Park Association; from Chittenden Park to Northwoods)
The New England National Scenic Trail (NET) is a 215-mile hiking trail route that has been in existence for over half a century. The NET travels through 41 communities in Connecticut and Massachusetts, and is comprised primarily of the historic Mattabesett, Metacomet, and Monadnock (M-M-M) Trail systems.
The NET was designated as a National Scenic Trail in 2009. This unique footpath travels through a classic New England landscape, featuring long-distance vistas with rural towns as a backdrop, agrarian lands, un-fragmented forests, and large river valleys. The trail also traverses past colonial historical landmarks and highlights a range of diverse ecosystems and natural resources: mountain ridges and summits, forested glades, wetlands and vernal pools, lakes, streams and waterfalls.
Thanks to the NET Stewardship Partners, the NET is open to the public for all to enjoy.
- The Appalachian Mountain Club (AMC) works with the National Park Service to maintain the Massachusetts portion of the New England Trail.
- The Connecticut Forest & Park Association (CFPA) works with the National Park Service to maintain the Connecticut portion of the New England Trail.
- The primary role of the National Park Service (NPS) is to assist AMC and CFPA in implementing the “Management Blueprint” while supporting on-the-ground management. The NPS also coordinates expenditure of federal funds for NET management and protection.
For more information or to view an interactive trail map of the New England Trail, visit www.newenglandtrail.org.
Interactive trail map: newenglandtrail.org/get-on-the-trail/map
Part 1: CT NET: Section 05 (Menunkatuck Trail) (3.20 miles) – newenglandtrail.org/get-on-the-trail/ct-net-section-05-menunkatuck-trail
Whether you’re beginning a long journey or just want to indulge in local history, this is a pleasant ramble through downtown Guilford. By following rural roads and town sidewalks you can visit four historic museums, take a stroll over to the Guilford Town Green or sit awhile at Chittenden Park, the NET’s southern terminus. This Park affords great views of Chaffinch Island Park, Faulkner’s Island and the Long Island Sound shoreline.
Part 2: CT NET: Section 06 (Menunkatuck Trail) (4.50 miles) – newenglandtrail.org/get-on-the-trail/ct-net-section-06-menunkatuck-trail
Follow the tidal East River, explore the recently protected East River Preserve. The Preserve is a birder’s paradise with its open fields and rolling terrain. Explore the diversity of the Nut Plains Woods, managed by the Guilford Land Conservation Trust. Nut Plains Woods is a 48-acre tract of beautiful woodland and has an extensive trail system.
Part 3: CT NET: Section 07 (Menunkatuck Trail) (3.60 miles) – newenglandtrail.org/get-on-the-trail/ct-net-section-07-menunkatuck-trail
The Timberlands is a 600-acre property of mostly upland forest and is home to a pristine trout stream, Iron Brook. The property has a number of hiking trails offering loops for families or the serious hiker. The trail also intersects some smaller parcels protected by the Guilford Land Conservation Trust.