Connecticut Nature August 16, 2021
Take In The Scenic Views Along The Jessie Gerard Trail In Connecticut
Some of the best hikes in the Nutmeg state have one thing in common—and it isn’t just the breathtaking views and gorgeous scenery. With so much interesting history throughout the years, it’s not surprising to find so many trails with a story behind them. The Jessie Gerard Trail and the Barkhamsted Lighthouse in Peoples State Forest is one of these historical sights filled with beauty and history that you will want to see for yourself.
The Jessie Gerard Trail is a 2.9-mile loop trail located near Barkhamsted. The moderate, yet challenging hike begins near the remains of an old Native American settlement that was known as the Barkhamsted Lighthouse.
The Barkhamsted Lighthouse isn't a traditional maritime lighthouse. A
community was built in the area during the mid-1700s. The old Native American trail that ran along the Farmington River was eventually improved for stagecoach access.
The community was nicknamed "the lighthouse" by the stagecoach drivers who saw the welcoming lights as a beacon along the stagecoach route. Remains of the settlement include foundations of 10 buildings, four charcoal kilns, and a cemetery.
Each part of the trail is clearly marked and easy to navigate during the spring and summer months. You can take the trail to the right which goes past the remains of the old Lighthouse settlement to get to the Chaugham Lookouts.
The trail to the left leads to a direct 299 stone step walkway that leads to three viewpoints, including a path that runs through the giant Veeder boulders.
Many hikers recommend the clockwise route as the easiest of the two paths. The hike up either path is steep and will definitely give you a workout.
You'll want to take some time along the hike to appreciate the gorgeous wildflowers along the way.
Although the rocky uphill climb will definitely make your legs burn, the views from the top are spectacular and some of the prettiest in Connecticut.
If you're up for an extra challenge and don't mind a little more rock scrambling, be sure to check out the upper and lower cascade waterfalls. The falls are seasonal, but seeing the beautiful 80-foot stream is worth the effort.
The Jessie Gerard Trail is both challenging and incredible. If you’re looking for more hiking trails with gorgeous views be sure to read
Tobys Rock Mountain Loop Trail Is A Low-Key Connecticut Hike That Has An Amazing Payoff. Address: Peoples State Forest, Barkhamsted, CT 06063, USA