A View of Connecticut: Where to See the Leaves?

October 11, 2011

One of the greatest things about living in New England is the changing seasons. With October already here, I’m sure you, like me, are all awaiting the colors of fall.

If you and your family are looking to venture out and view the foliage, Connecticut is truly the perfect venue. Even better, our area of the state is actually home to some of the best viewing areas. For those of you looking to ‘leaf peep’ on foot, try visiting:

Macedonia Brook State Park, Kent – Cobble Mountain 
Take white blazed Cobble Mountain Trail. The overlook has views across the Harlem Valley to the Taconic and Catskill Mountains.

Mohawk State Forest, Cornwall 
Scenic vistas to the north and west include the Catskill, Taconic and Berkshire ranges. For your hiking pleasure both the Mattatuck and Mohawk trails (blue blazed) cross the site.

Peoples State Forest, Barkhamsted
– Chaugnam Lookout 
Take trail (yellow blazes) to two lookouts.

Shenipsit State Forest, Somers – Observation Tower 
For your hiking enjoyment, Shenipsit Trail (blue blazed) runs by the tower. The observation tower on Soapstone Mountain provides wonderful views of the surrounding and distant landscapes.

Talcott Mountain State Park, Simsbury – Heublein Tower 
Hike to ridge, then left to the restored Heublein tower. View from tower is over the Farmington River Valley.
Another nearby alternative is located at Penwood State Park (entrance is on left 500 feet east from Talcott Mountain entrance). From the parking lot, a hike up the gated road loops to an escarpment overlook.

Mt. Tom State Park, Litchfield 
NOTICE: Please be aware that as of October 4, 2010 the tower has been temporarily closed for repairs.

Dennis Hill State Park, Norfolk

A summit pavilion located 1, 627 feet above sea level provides views of New Hampshire, Vermont’s Green Mountains, and more. The drive to the summit is open weekends only from October 4 through October 26.

The state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) estimates that peak color in Connecticut is to be between October 11th and November 13th.

DEEP is also a perfect resource for all fall foliage information. Go online to www.ct.gov/deep for a complete list of viewing spots across the state, tips for prime ‘leaf peeping,’ and even some great kid-friendly facts about the science behind why leaves change color.

So, if you and your family venture out, make sure you visit DEEP’s website, dress warm and be ready to see the beautiful colors of our towns. See you out there.