Explore the most popular hiking trails near Stafford Springs with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

trail running
6 days ago

Really enjoyed running this loop. Accessed from the North from Breakneck Rd in Sturbridge MA. Like the 1906 granite state border markers.

trail running
22 days ago

Nice trail on west side going up the hills with a few decent vista points along the way. A wet and annoying return on the access road starting at the state line. Looks like park officials want to restrict access to snowmobiles and motorcycles so put up a series of barriers along road. This, in addition to all the water, was a pain in the neck. Looks like there are alternate options though, one closer to the Pond and one up the hill. Overall, a nice property!

hiking
29 days ago

Agree that the first half mile is not “easy”. Nice mix of hardwood and evergreens.

very well marked. this is my goto trail.

Not much elevation gain but don’t be fooled. This trail is very rugged in parts. The western side is more interesting and has a number of campgrounds you can explore. At the north end and on the east side you can hear the traffic from 84.

Great hike! Definitely will do it again.

I followed this trail almost exact, except I kept to the park maps Blue Blazed Nipmuck Trail instead of breaking off onto the Ridge Trail. There were some hills and rocky parts, and I've been pretty lazy during this summer (too hot!), but I was able to complete the whole trail while carrying my 1-year old on me and a backpack. I also had my dog with me and she LOVED the trail and swimming in the pond. I'm planning on bringing my husband back with me to camp since there are a lot of camping spots along the trail as well. We saw several frogs, toads, birds, mushrooms, flowers, and the southern half of Breakneck Pond was covered in lilies in bloom, thousands of them! The only down side was the bugs, bring bug spray and spray yourself REALLY well EVERYWHERE! I think this has been my favorite hike in CT thus far, I hope to find more like it.

My favorite place to go with my girlfriend to just get away and relax.

It was a beautiful place, very quiet, huge and plenty of trails to choose from. I suggest taking a trail map with you, we chose the orange and blue trail which was nice but there were forks in the path that were not marked so it got a little confusing. Very buggy so bring bug spray, the nature aspect was awesome, feels like you are in the middle of nowhere, plan on paying to get into the state park, $9 for CT residents.

hiking
11 months ago

Excellent trail. The first 1/2 mile is a little steep but then flat.

hiking
Friday, May 19, 2017

Love the park, love the trails, hate the bugs!

hiking
Thursday, April 20, 2017

Nice half-day loop. Has a good balance of flat walking and uphill hiking. Well maintained though its easy to windup off the trail and on one of the access roads. Overall a great place to go when you want to stay local.

Amazing swimming holes and I always can find a private spot

Monday, April 17, 2017

My favorite place and its in my backyard

hiking
Thursday, March 02, 2017

Went in early winter, beautiful! The rocks on the trail can get a bit slippery. Definitely coming back in the warmer months.

a beautiful day with my dog :) a little muddy and a little bit of water to cross . I'm glad some of it was frozen

hiking
Monday, January 02, 2017

Great winter hike!

hiking
Sunday, August 14, 2016

Hot but good hike.

Great hike, but very buggy. Highly recommend bug spray and full coverage clothing.

backpacking
Sunday, June 26, 2016

I started on the Ridge Trail but due to the heat I cut across some four wheeler paths (where the first sign with arrows is) and went down to do the Breakneck Pond loop. Did 7.2 miles total. Definitely a great hike and will do it again when the weather cools down. Sweat, hills and bugs are a bad combination lol

hiking
Saturday, April 30, 2016

I hiked at Bigelow today (4/30/16) and made an approx. 10 mile loop. I parked at the lot at the north end of Bigelow Pond across from the 2nd Kiosk. I crossed the street and entered the white blaze path right behind the kiosk. A short way in the Blue/Orange Ridge Trail started and I took this trail. I followed it all the way to the northern tip of Breakneck Pond, then hiked down the west side of Breakneck using the blue/orange blazes (park of the loop trail that looks like it's blue on the maps). Once I got to the south end of Breakneck Pond I hiked south up the dirt/wood Breakneck Hill Rd, then the Lower Breakneck Hill Rd, and then the Mountain Rd to Park Rd and then the short White blazed section back to the the starting area. The map which can easily be found online will help this description make sense.

The Ridge Trail is great. Some awesome views. The trail along Breakneck Pond is also excellent. I have to say I put on a few pounds over the winter and might be a little de-conditioned but this hike kicked my arse (in a good way). Some challenging areas with great views, very remote, and just a great hike. An added plus was that although the bugs are starting to emerge, I didn't need to use any spray at all today and gnats were not an issue. Awesome day.

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Very quiet trail when done early in the day.

Beautiful, easy loop on
edge of the water, with the option of a more difficult trail.

Monday, March 14, 2016

This trail was awesome! It was hard then easy the trail follows all around the lake and with deep woods and valleys!! Fantastic!!

It was a great hike, everything was well marked and I would do it again.

hiking
Sunday, October 18, 2015

Great fall hike. Did the roughly five mile trail - had some interesting elevation changes without being challenging.

We parked at the northern end of Bigelow Pond and started our hike on the very well marked ridge trail. This trail was an interesting mix of rocky outcroppings and scenic woodlands. This trail is listed as a difficult trail but I would rate it as barely moderate. There were a few hills that got the heart pumping but that was about it. We followed the ridge trail to the northern end of Breakneck Pond and then took the Nipmuck trail down the east side of Breakneck Pond. This was a pretty easy trail but did get very narrow at times. There were areas where the path was very near the pond with a steep drop off. If you bring children, have them close to you on this trail. The Nipmuck trail was very scenic . I've uploaded a few photos. The combination of the two trails made for a 5 hour 8.5 mile hike.

Going around Breakneck Pond will take 3 hours or so but worthwhile.

hiking
Wednesday, July 08, 2015

I hiked the blue blazed trail up and around Breakneck Pond. GPS said 6.53 miles for the hike. It was a wonderful hike, but not for the novice hiker.Some spots are muddy while others are very rocky. some of the trail is very narrow and on a steep incline which falls right to the water.
From the entry on Rt 171 i Parked in the lot on the right with a trail Kiosk at the front of it. I think it was the first lot on the right, though it might be the second. At the back of the lot is a green gate leading onto a wide dirt path. Just a little down is a small sign on the right with an arrow saying "to Nipmuck Trail" this is the beginning of the blue blazed trail. I didn't find the trail hard to follow and only had to stop twice to look for the blazes. These two spots were at the top and bottom of the pond where there is a diverging of many trails. It should be noted that the trail down the west side of the lake is a blue/red blaze, instead of just the blue that it is marked on the map I got from the CT state park and forest web site. There are many campsites around the lake (many more than are noted on the map) and these sites make for great break spots as they all have excellent views of the water. It is 1.45 miles to the south shore of the pond, 3.63 miles around the pond, then another 1.45 back to the parking lot.
I went on a Wednesday afternoon in July, and aside from seeing a few cars entering and exiting the park, I didn't see another soul the entire time. It was a beautiful and peaceful hike. A few pearls of wisdom. 1. Bug spray is a MUST! I was wearing a 90% deet and still got a few bites. The poor dog just about got eaten alive by horseflies. 2. This park is a pay-to-play on holidays and weekends. I don't know what the fee is, but be prepared if you're going on the weekend.

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