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Mount Prospect and Raccoon Hill via Appalachian Trail

moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(191)
Lime Rock Park

Mount Prospect and Raccoon Hill via Appalachian Trail is a 6.3 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Falls Village, Connecticut that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from March until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.

Length 6.3 mi Elevation gain 1,305 ft Route type Out & Back

Dogs on leash

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Nature trips

Bird watching

Running

Forest

River

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Rocky

Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Getting There

As of July 2020, this trail may be closed due to COVID 19. Please check with the park before visiting. No matter how many hikes you’ve done in the area, it’s unlikely that you’ve ever done one quite like Rand’s View. Most of the hike is standard enough, following the Appalachian Trail over moderate inclines. You’ll climb past the decent view atop Mt. Prospect, which might serve as its own a destination on a normal hike. But then you come down the other side of the mountain and emerge from dense woods into this crazy, enormous meadow that seems like it shouldn’t exist at all. The low grass stretches on and on, leading to a panoramic view of the Berkshires beyond. A perfect place to enjoy a romp, a picnic or both.

Limestone Spring Shelter ~ .5 miles from Rand's View

From Poughkeepsie, head east on Route 44 all the way through the town of Millerton. 2.1 miles after the center of Millerton (still on Route 44), turn right onto CT 112 E (Interlaken Road), which becomes Lime Rock Road. 4.8 miles after leaving Rt 44, turn left onto Salmon Kill Road. In .6 miles, veer right onto Brinton Hill Road, which is a tiny, windy affair. In 1.1 miles, Brinton Hill Road dead-ends into Dugway Road, where you’ll turn left. Head straight, and Dugway Road becomes Housatonic River Road in .3 miles. Follow Housatonic River Road about another half-mile to the gated, dirt parking area on your right, just above the falls and dam on the Housatonic River. Hop out of your car, carefully take a gander at the top of the falls, then let the adventure begin! Follow the Appalachian Trail (White Blazes) up to the summit of Prospect Mountain. Once at the top, keep going about a mile further until you reach Rand's View.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (193)
Photos (291)
Recordings (170)
Completed (309)
Chris Cruthirds
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Hiking

Trail is closed with no where to park

Emily Brewer
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Hiking

Trail was closed due to COVID as of 7/13/2020.

Laurel Humphreys
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Hiking

I did this trail in the rain and it was lovely!! There’s plenty of tree coverage, and it wasn’t very muddy at all. A little challenging, but totally doable. Most of the incline is just in the first 40% of the hike.

View Laurel's Recording
Tiffany O'Hearn
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Hiking

this was the most beautiful hike we've been on. perfect. beautiful. met two sets of hikers doing distance. awesome to speak too. I recommend.

View Tiffany's Recording
Kimi Kehr
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 19, 2020
Hiking

Let me start by saying that my recording is trash. GENERAL FEEL: You know the YouTube videos of 'woods sounds'? Walking through this trail was like someone was playing a recoding... It was beautiful. There were birds chirping, squirrels chittering, and the soft crunch of pine needles underfoot. The iconic New England wooded area. To continue along that vein, the trail itself was much like the recorded trails that you can play on a treadmill at the YMCA. When I say it was perfect, I am not exaggerating. TIME: My dog and I started around 3pm and ended back up at the parking lot at 7pm (~4 hours). This also allowed time for supper and enjoying the view. VIEWS: The views from the summit and Rands View are to DIE for but the second hill was anticlimactic. With that in mind, I do encourage you to go to the end to see the big bolder. Enjoy your hike!

View Kimi's Recording
Taylor Mitchell
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Hiking

The trail was beautiful and diverse, my dog and I loved it!

View Taylor's Recording
Chris Lauretano
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 13, 2020
Hiking

Great medium difficulty (for CT) hike. View from Rand’s View makes it worth it, do not stop at the summit you’ll be disappointed. Raccoon hill has no view at all but it’s pretty at the top, nicely forested with grass still. Not a ton of wildflowers on the trail.

View Chris's Recording
Tamara L
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 8, 2020
Hiking

Great hike. Gradual uphill a good part of the trail going up - which made it easy on the knees going down. I didn’t think the view was anything special at all, but the meadow towards the end (take a right at the T to continue on white) was beautiful! Crowded on the weekend - even still, really enjoyed it.

John W.
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HikingOver grown
View John's Recording
Alex L
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Hiking

Overall great out and back trail, elevation is gradual over time. So you really don’t feel it and doesn’t feel like other 6 mile trails I have done wondering when it will be done. This trail had awesome views from the start and always changing. The overlook view was great, but the meadow is amazing and worth the trip out to. Little buggy but it is the woods and no mud or even wet spots where mud would be.

View Alex's Recording
Lynn Sheeran
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Hiking

Uphill 2 miles then another miles or so and it opens onto a beautiful huge grassy area with far off views. Amazing spot for a picnic, snack, or just a rest. One view on the way up. Can’t wait to try this in winter- there must be more views. Very cool waterfall and dam area at start of hike.

View Lynn's Recording
Jo-Ann Hall
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Hiking

Rands View is spectacular! Make the trek to Lime Rock—-it’s worth it

View Jo-Ann's Recording
Jason Manske
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Hiking

Pretty hike, although not particularly hard. The meadow is amazing! Well worth it.

Judith Ehrman-Shapiro
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Hiking

For me, this was a stunner! The falls, the view from Prospect Mountain, Rand’s View, the beautiful forest in spring with its wildflowers blooming. Bugs weren’t too bad and a beautiful day. Took me a long time to do 6.2 miles because I was birdwatching and because I sat and enjoyed each of the views- almost 5 hours (seems most do it between 2.5 and 3.5 hours). I will definitely be back. Very clearly marked. A lovely climb!

Jeff Ortl
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Camping

5/2 - 5/3/2020: Nice trail, surprisingly without mud even after several previous days of rain. I parked inside the public gate by the falls overnight, no issues. Mt Prospect view is average, small view hole with the surrounding vegetation. Rand View field was great though. I later returned after setting up camp to catch sunset which happens just at the western edge of the meadow so it casts across the valley very well. Saw deer, turkey, vultures and even a porcupine Lime Rock camp has 3 platforms and a lean-to and privy. Also space for extra tents. Easy 3ish mile hike in, brought my dog.

Amanda S
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HikingBugs

The big waterfall at the start of the trail was the highlight for me. It was a good trail through the woods, not much to see until you get to the top of Prospect and you can see out. We continued on to rand’s view. You get to a point where you can go left or right. Right takes you to Rands View. A couple coming from the left convinced us that there was cool stuff to see to the left including a waterfall and it was only a half mile but cautioned us it was steep. Let me say, don’t take this little detour. It was extremely steep- kinda dangerous, the waterfall sucked it was a trickle of water; and the cool things to see were a lean to, a bear box, and an outhouse. And then you have to walk back up which was awful- you walked up very steep rocks and it was like a very long vertical incline. Anyway; we eventually made it back to that intersection and continued on to Rands View which was nice- an open field w the mountains in the distance. At this point we should have turned around but we didn’t. We continued on. Raccoon Hill was lame and there’s nothing spectacular to see when you get to the top. The only reason I knew I was at the top was because I was watching my progress on the map provided in this app. The two spots with views were nice and the waterfall across the street was cool at the start but I wouldn’t do this one again. Definitely over hyped. And there were a ton of bugs. As for parking, there’s a lot that holds 10-12 cars if everyone parks appropriately. We got the last spot. When we came out, there were a ton of cars parked on the shoulder.

Isabel Gomez
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HikingRocky

Great trail! Well maintained and not too busy during these quarantine times. Also surprisingly not muddy given it’s rained so much.

Brian Goersch
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Hiking

One of the best hikes in CT. My map recordings was to giants thumb and back.

View Brian's Recording
Paul Ryan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 15, 2020
Hiking

This trail has it all: it starts with the biggest waterfall I’ve seen (today it was absolutely ROARING), has a good mix of uphill, even, and downhill grades well marked made of clear trails of dirt and smooth rock, and nice views all the way up. The payoff of the majestic Rand’s View at the end is rewarding. We did 5.6 miles in 2 hours, 17 minutes. Not too hard for novices, but challenging enough to get the heart pumping.

Jesse Bordwin
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray StarGray StarApril 12, 2020
Hiking

Not a bad trail at all, just overhyped in the description. Besides the top of Mt Prospect, where you really have this nice vantage over the Berkshire, much of it feels like it's only a couple-of-tree's remove from people's backyards. No issues with mud, well marked.

Stephanie Brilla
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Hiking

Great trail and views of the falls. Plenty of spots to stop and rest. A little muddy in some spots since it rained the last few days but not too bad.

Trish Whitehouse
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HikingIcy

Excellent hike- the mud is slippery and closer to Rands you need micro spikes.

View Trish's Recording
Trish Whitehouse
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Hiking

Foggy but still a great hike!

View Trish's Recording
Duston Hodgkins
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HikingBugs

I would do this hike again. Prospect Mountain had a small summit with a little view where we stopped and ate our lunch. It took about 45 minutes to summit from the parking lot. Rand's View is really amazing! Definitely one of the best I have seen in CT. I dropped one star for bugs. We used DEET spray and we're still getting swarmed by the black flies. Eventually we gave up and turned around before summiting Raccoon Hill bc of the bugs. Still views made it worth it.

View Duston's Recording
Amy Lillis
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Hiking

Great trail. Beautiful overlook. Definitely head down to the field for Rand’s View.

View Amy's Recording
Monica Vitale
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJune 15, 2019
Hiking

We went on a Saturday morning in June and it was fantastic. Although a warm day, the paths are mostly shaded so it remained comfortable. The meadows are beautiful and the view from the top worth the climb. It is definitely a moderate hike with some challenging portions. Took us two hours from the dam to the large meadow and back, which included a few short breaks. Highly recommended!

Brian Krulish
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarOctober 11, 2018
Hiking

The Saturday I was there was overcast and dreary with no view of the Berkshires from Rand's view and a slight view from Mount Prospect. On the plus side The Great Falls were RAGIN!! Had a nice picnic at Rand's view will definitely return one day when the weather is nice!!

Dana Astmann
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 24, 2018
Hiking

there are some great views on this hike — not just the gorgeous meadow at rand's view, but also the view from mt. prospect and a nice variety of woodlands. i second the suggestion to drive past the marked trailhead and park in the lot by the dam. you can pick up the trail just across the road from there. lots of poison ivy along the trail, so keep your eyes out. but there are also some nice wildflowers blooming right now, especially goldenrod.

Jim Wheeler
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSeptember 1, 2018
Hiking

Rand's View is just incredible, there's nothing in CT like it. Instead of parking where the directions for this takes you, I recommend driving up further until you find a parking lot on the right which is near the dam. It's a 1.8 mile hike from there to the summit of Mt. Prospect. The beginning and end parts of the hike are easy, the middle gets steep. Thankfully it peters out and the last quarter mile or so is pretty flat. The view at the summit is good, though a bit limited with the trees on the side. The hike down to Rand's View was very easy, only about another 15 minutes. I didn't go any further onto Raccoon Hill, so the total hike for me was about 6 miles with roughly 1000 feet of elevation gain. Total hike time for me was 2 hours 47 minutes. It was cloudy when I went but still had a fantastic view. Best in CT!

Matthew Conroy
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Hiking

Great hike with a unique payoff at Rand's View. Was lucky to have the meadow all to myself, as I arrived early. Unfortunately it was a bit misty and foggy in the distance so the view was not all it might have been. Still super cool. I didn't hike as far as the AllTrails route indicates, but I did check out Giant's Thumb and went a little beyond that, until I saw the trail heading steeply downhill. Mount Prospect view is nice, though not spectacular. But it's a good place to rest for a while before chugging along to Rand's View. Lots of nice ups and downs on this trail, but nothing too taxing.

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