I met Tom, my Newtown Bridal Lands Association compadre, at Pond Brook this morning and we parked over at the south end lot and started our trail walk. I told my wife I would be gone two hours, ended up being four and was she pissed when I got home, but it was worth it. I am not going to let the cat out of the bag but I can tell you that what we marked today, if it comes to fruition is going to be the coolest 1.4 miles of multi-use trail in the State of Connecticut. The variety of terrain and proximity to all sorts of fun stuff along the way on this trail is just mind boggling.
I still can't fathom why so many people like Al's Trail along the water when deep within the forest is a plethora of unique terrain features with gradual and steady climbs/descents and all sorts of little challenges along the way.
Overview of the trail: The first 1.4 miles runs between Echo Valley and the Polly Brody Forest Road (aka the Jeep Road). In stead of coming out where the blue tape trail starts off of the Forest Road that picks up the Mullikin Trail, we found a route that stays along the ridge and comes out where the third trail starts coming from Hanover Road.
Bob had a brilliant idea. Since the equestrians really hate this side of the Polly Brody, lets find a way to link lower section of the Mullikin Trail to the White Trail, which if you recall, I tried to find that once and found remnants that were deeply burried in thicket. I don't think I posted a map of this ride yet, however, its there. So the next .5 miles will consist of Forest Road, and then the last 1.7 miles, most of which is already defined because it would include the Drop Zone and the lower half of the Mullikin Trail, which makes for an approximate 3.6 mile trail starting at Pond Brook and coming back out on Echo Valley. Then you could loop back on the forest road for another mile and a half and get a 5+ mile work out!
Since it will be a multi-use trail, for both horses and bikes, it won't be as challenging as Al's trail but what it will have is continuity, order, organization, proper maintenance and variety. Now, just have to get back out and finish marking the rest of this. If we get the OK for the whole trail, I will post a very detailed map of what it will look like.