Friday, May 22, 2015

North-South Trail Trek - Section #5

It was another warm day on the North-South Trail when I hiked 13 miles from Shady Acres in Northern Foster to the George Washington Campground in Glocester. I started on an ancient carriage road the was recently discovered and cleared of the forest that had reclaimed it over the past hundreds of years. It was flat and easy walking but it ended after 1.5 miles when the trail once again took to paved roads.  (A note to potential future NST hikers: there is far too much road walking!)

The road skirted the RI/CT boarder for a short while before crossing into CT and remaining there for the next 4.5 miles. Some of the trail in CT passed through the Killingly Pond Management Area (KPMA) which provided the best scenery on the day when the trail passed between Killingly Pond and Middle Reservoir. The rest of the hike through KPMA was disappointing as the trail stayed on dirt roads the entire way.

After KPMA, it was back to RI for more road walking on dirt and paved roads, before entering the Durfee Hill Management Area (DHMA). The trail once again stuck to the dirt road through DHMA but it was in very rough shape from heavy motorcycle (dirt bikes) use. The NST FINALLY turned to single track as it neared the George Washington Campground but it was too little too late. I had already decided I was done with this trail.

I estimate that at least 40% of the North-South Trail is on paved roads and much of the trail through wooded areas is on dirt or gravel roads, not single-track trails. Although I've complete over half the trail I don't think I'll return to complete the remaining miles. I  may focus my effort on finishing up the remaining 70 miles needed to complete the 230 mile Bay Circuit Trail in MA.

Map of the route (credit: Ron Correia)

Plenty of ups and downs

Ancient road in Northern Foster

The NST is the best blazed trail I've ever hiked. One could argue it is over blazed.

I never get tired of seeing these old New England stone walls.

Signage at site of wagon wheel shop and shingle mill from 1890.

This is all that remains of the structure.

Another historic cemetery.

Entering CT

CT state land marker.

I liked the colorful reflections in the water.

Best view of the day at Killingly Pond.

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