A long wooded ridge dominates the sunset-side of the Connecticut River Valley in the vicinity of Hartford. Crested atop the northerly portion of the Talcott Mountain Range lies a sizable portion of the public domain, Penwood State Park. With this gift in 1944 to the citizens of Connecticut of nearly 800 acres, Curtis H. Veeder wished only that his beloved hilltop, "be kept in a natural state so that those who love nature may enjoy this property as I have enjoyed it." Veeder was an industrialist, inventor and outdoorsman. Early maps of Penwood evidence Veeder's engineering skill and demand for precise accuracy. Surveying, often after dark, he used a complex theodolite instrument and a flashlight to establish a true meridian line from the exact position of a star. Ardent hikers, Veeder and his wife, Louise, built many trails from which to more intimately observe the wildlife, woodland phenomena and scenic vistas surrounding the mountain. Appropriately, a section of Connecticut's Blue Blazed Trail system, the Metacomet, now traverses much of Penwood. In April, as the snow recedes, colorful wildflowers carpet gravelly pockets of soil. The trillium is common as are dutchman's breeches, hepatica, bloodroot, and trailing arbutus. Occasionally the hiker may glimpse the flight of a pileated woodpecker, turkey vulture or bald eagle. Honoring the donor's request, ground-fires, horses and camping are excluded from the activities at Penwood.

Loved it. Rain and all!

hiking
6 months ago

A moderate trail with a view of Hublein tower to the south if on the metacomet. Some loose rock areas...watch out on the stone staircase passing the wildlife sanctuary. The new england trail dumps out on mountain rd heading north.

Hiked it today with our 13 year old,9 year old and 1 year old puppy!! Great trail, not for the novice hiker. Unlike many of the reviews we did not find the trail to be poorly marked, but rather the opposite. We went on the hike to go geocaching and found 3 out of the 4 we were looking for. We hiked about 4 miles total and we were primarily on the Blue Trail.

Close to home, and I'm a novice. Will be back, looking forward to conquering all of the trails.

hiking
Wednesday, November 23, 2016

This was an awesome hike, done as a loop from the Rt 185 parking lot area. Headed north on the Yellow blazed trail continuing north on the Orange blazed trail to Wintonbury Rd. U-Turn and return south on the Blue blazed Metacomet Trail. Awesome views to the west as you run up and down this ridge line, especially from the Pinnacle, on the Metacomet. I gained a great appreciation and understanding for what Traprock is, and hence the term "Traprock Ridge" all makes sense to me now. A strong recommend. 1033' vertical gain, 6.4 miles RT, approx 3 hrs 15 mins. with a few stops for lunch and photo ops.

hiking
Thursday, July 14, 2016

Great easy to moderate trail, we did the blue and orange trails. Only downside is the trees are poorly marked at some areas making it difficult to stay on path. We hiked for a total of 4 hours and I would definitely do it again and recommend it to hikers at all levels. The view is much better than Talcott too!! 5 stars.

hiking
Monday, July 04, 2016

I did a 4 mile hike and on way back hiked portion of Metacomet trail. The blue blazed trails are well marked. However the trails are not marked. Would love doing it again.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

challenging but awesome

hiking
Monday, April 18, 2016

Great experience! We did the blue trail. The peek at the end was well worth it! And loved the option for the road walk on the way back.

hiking
Thursday, April 14, 2016

Blue trail (Metacomet) is a moderate hike. A few hills to climb. If you hike north past Lake Louise you get the best scenery overlooking the valley.

hiking
Monday, April 04, 2016

I have done this hike with a friend, who had a baby in a backpack. We ended up hiking over 4 miles. The only reason I gave it 4 starts and not 5, is the trails aren't always clearly marked and you almost feel as if you are lost. Now that I have done the trail once, it should make the next time easier. The views are beautiful once you get higher up.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Great for exploring through the woods with kids. great balance of challenge and ease.

Sunday, March 06, 2016

Really good mountain a lot of side trails somewhat challenging with a lot of climbs

hiking
Wednesday, December 23, 2015

I thought the view on the yellow trail was beautiful. The birch trees on the Metacomet are lovely too. Worth visiting again!

hiking
Sunday, July 19, 2015

Nothing spectacular but not a bad hike

hiking
Thursday, July 16, 2015

Starting from the parking lot off Rt 185, I took the yellow to orange to blue. GPS says it was 6.31 miles. It was a good hike with some nice views and some strenuous parts but don't think I would do it again. I was a little disappointed at how short the trail was and the "lake" was a disappointment. I've seen puddles bigger than that. It was pretty but definitely not what I expected.
Yellow and orange were easy forest walking. Yellow had one or two nice lookout points to the mountains in the west. The map I had was slightly misleading as it showed a white trail that connected yellow and orange, but that white didn't exist and yellow connected right to orange. There is also a gravel trail that runs from the parking lot to the lake and at times it is so close to the yellow trail you could touch it. Orange trail ends at the beginning of Wolcox Park and here blue Metacomet has a rather steep but relatively short incline up. My biggest complaint with the northern part of the blue is that there are many unmarked trails that intersect it and blue is not clearly marked at these intersections. But a little effort and sense and you can follow blue without much difficultly.
At one point the Metacomet has a great vista where you can see a long way and can even see Hublien Tower. I saw a couple people but at the parking lots at both ends, no one on the trails. I saw a decent amount of wildlife which added a nice touch. However if your looking for quiet this is not the place. The airport is not to far away and there were constantly low flying aircraft overhead drowning out the forest sounds.

hiking
Sunday, July 05, 2015

July 3, 2015. Hiked from the parking lot, took the Yellow Trail to the Orange to the very end, then came back entirely on the Blue Metacomet Trail to the parking lot. Used MapMyHike, gps recorded it as 7.13 miles. Yellow/Orange trail is easy/moderate. Blue trail is a bit more strenuous especially the beginning when coming off the orange to turn back. Took in Lake Louise and a side trail that contained numerous cairn's in one location.

hiking
Thursday, October 23, 2014

This can be done under two hours for those who are seasoned hikers. Several option for choosing which trail to hike. I did the yellow and crossed over to the blue at the end of it, then looped back to the parking lot. The other way is to start with blue go all the way to the end and cross over to the yellow or just turn around and go back the way you came -- this is more challenging since the blue trail is definitely harder -- a lot of steep inclines, right from the get go. There are a couple nice spots -- i loved the stone staircase, you will feel that one climbing up:). The little lake is also pretty scenic and there is a nice lookout little after you've climbed up those stairs. Overall a great hike! Keep going back there!

hiking
Sunday, October 19, 2014

Followed the yellow trail up. Beautiful views most of the way. Very easy terrain. We ended up somehow on an old road then on the blue Metacomet. Up a set of rock steps to a beautiful overlook. Well worth it. We started to continue on blue but decided to turn back. We followed blue to a road which brought us down to Lake Louise and a hiker kiosk. The lake with the foliage was beautiful. We then followed blue down. A nice wooded trail, a few interesting ruins just off trail. Ended up back at a road by a lake/body of water. Nice hike. Map was a bit confusing. Trails aren't well blazed but well maintained.

hiking
Monday, September 29, 2014

It was a good hike. I thought some of the trails weren't marked too well. There's a purple trail that doesn't exist on the map that was published in 2009. The lookout at the top of the Metocomet Trail (blue trail) was beautiful. The yellow trail had amazing lookouts as well. Went on a Sunday morning at around 9 a.m. in the fall - place started getting busier around 11.

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