McLean Game Refuge Trail

EASY 28 reviews
#1 of 3 trails in

McLean Game Refuge Trail is a 3.4 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Granby, Connecticut that features a great forest setting and is good for all skill levels. The trail is primarily used for hiking, walking, nature trips, and birding and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

DISTANCE
3.4 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
331 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Loop

dogs on leash

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

walking

forest

hiking
1 day ago

hiking
17 days ago

27 days ago

27 days ago

This is not an easy trail of you take the summit route. Take the Spring Pond route for an easy hike

hiking
3 months ago

4 months ago

4 months ago

4 months ago

hiking
5 months ago

Love taking our dog out here! Great family hiking

6 months ago

Great family spot

hiking
9 months ago

Sunday, January 31, 2016

hiking
Sunday, November 15, 2015

hiking
Monday, October 05, 2015

walking
Saturday, September 26, 2015

hiking
Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Sunday, September 06, 2015

hiking
Sunday, August 30, 2015

The 3, 200 acre McLean Game Refuge has many options for hikes, but this is one of my favorites. I entered the refuge through the gate on Canton Road. There is room here for a few cars to park along the side of the road. I followed the woods road down the hill and took a right (north) going toward Trout Pond. Up and over the hill and you come down to a bridge over Bissell Brook. A little farther, and the purple North Trail goes off to the left. At the top of the ridge (an esker?), turn left again and follow the purple blazes to the woods road. Early in the spring, you can start to hear the Wood Frogs that are up ahead in Kettle Pond. They are really loud and come out even when there is ice still on the pond. From the woods road, turn left again following the purple North trail down past Kettle Pond. The level of the pond is really low right now. The place I took the picture from is usually under water. In addition to Wood frogs, you can often see the Eastern newt and painted turtles. Up to the edge of a field and around through a beautiful pine forest. I am leery of ticks so I only take the path through the field in the winter when the vegetation is low or covered. The frame of an old tractor is sitting in the woods here. A left down to Spring Pond (there is no trail marker). Spring Pond is a nice spot, quieter than Trout Pond. There is a little shelter here, not really a cabin. I don't usually see geese at this pond, but I have seen kingfishers and herons. If you walk around the pond, you will probably see painted turtles basking on the logs.
The trail map on the game refuge website is quite detailed. I have a folding map of the refuge that I picked up at some event. With so many trails in the refuge, I find it quite helpful. I am not sure, but you may be able to get one if you contact the refuge at their website.

hiking
Sunday, July 12, 2015

I entered the refuge from the Barndoor Hills Road parking area, also known in the refuge as the picnic grove. Very nice area to hike, although I would call it more of a long walk, as it was very easy. There is an extensive set of trails here ranging from wide carriage roads to narrower hiking trails. The entrance at Barndoor Hills rd does not have a map posted and I was unable to find one so I was going in blind so to speak. Not having a map, the trail system was very confusing to follow. I hiked parts of the green, purple, blue, and yellow trails before finally coming to the Salmon Brook street entrance which had a map posted. I took a pic of the map and was then easily able to follow it. However, the map is marked with trail names, not colors, so I had to figure out which was which on my own. But, all that said, it was a very nice walk. Even without a map I never felt lost as all the trails tend to converge and loop back on each other and the intersections tend to be well marked. At one point came to a beautiful pond, called Trout Pond. It was picture perfect. On another trail, I came across a white tailed deer feeding in a field. She obviously isn't used to seeing people because she just stood there and looked at me while I stood there and took pictures. She wasn't more than 40 feet from me. It was an amazing moment. After a few moments of watching her, I wondered off down the trail and she went back to dinner. It was very peaceful. Iwent on a Saturday afternoon, was there for 2 hours, walking more than 5 miles and I didn't see a single other person, except a mother and children playing in the creek at the picnic area by the parking lot on my way in. If your looking for a nice place to take the kids or an easy afternoon stroll this is a good place. The only reason I'm giving it four stars instead of 5 is because of the lack of map available at my entrance.

cross country skiing
Sunday, June 14, 2015

Easy day hike with lots of options. Good for kids and dogs (on leash).