Cheshire
Land Trust


 

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CLT Properties

Open Space Map

View of Hanging Hills from Prospect Ridge

Prospect Ridge Map

Click on map for printable PDF map file

Cheshire Land Trust
Preserving Land as a Living Resource Since 1969

Prospect Ridge Preservation

Cheshire's western border is defined by forested uplands known as Prospect Ridge. To earlier settlers they were known as the "Blew Hills". The ridges rise 400 to 650 feet and run in a northerly direction from Mount Sanford (elev. 800' ) on the Hamden / Bethany town line and abruptly descend in the area of the Notch at West Main St. They rise again at Peck Mountain and the other hills that form a rocky spine that extends into Southington and beyond.  

Much of the ridge was deforested in the 19th century for lumber and firewood. The hills became steep pasture lands defined by craggy stonewalls, wood lots and mill sites where water power from the mountain brooks could be harnessed for their energy.

The rugged terrain was less ideal for homesteads so the march of time saw the town's further development in the lowlands as forest reclaimed the hills where recreational pursuits were gradually introduced. In 1928 Edgar Heermance started the Quinnipiac Trail, the first trail in the Connecticut Blue Trail System. The 22 mile footpath has about 4.4 miles of well marked, easy to walk trail crossing some of Cheshire's most beautiful land.

 

Prospect Ridge

Location: Cheshire / Prospect town line
Acquisitions by: Town of Cheshire, State of Connecticut, Cheshire Land Trust 1970 - 1993

Acreage: 330 acres

Current Use: Habitat protection, forest management, watershed protection and passive recreation.

Public Access: Yes

History: CLT's first acquisition was a gift of Helen Russell, 40 acres of mountainous forested property she bequeathed to the Trust in 1970. (This property was first offered to the town but was declined) This set the table for ridge top protection efforts. This was followed by the trust's strong support for the town's acquisition of Roaring Brook Falls in 1978. In 1979 CLT member Linda Carmichael donated Nettleton's Ravine, a 14 acre property characterized by a deep ravine with rain forest-like flora and fauna populations. This fragile environment is under careful protection of the trust and public access is limited. The final piece of CLT ridge property is the 24 acre Thomas Pool Memorial donated by Percy Goodsell in 1981. This property is off the Blue Trail and features rocky outcrops, steep slopes and beautiful views of Cheshire and the Hanging Hills of Meriden.

The town embarked on a community supported program of land acquisition in 1986. Much of the early acquisitions focused on Propect Ridge where 165 acres have been purchased by town and state funds.These properties together with the 85 acres of Roaring Brook Falls represent a significant effort towards the preservation of irreplaceable natural resources.

Description: Ridge top properties forested by dense stands of hardwoods including beech, red oak, white oak, sugar maple, black cherry, hemlock, white pine, mountain laurel and more. The forests are populated by deer, raccoons, squirrels, red fox, coyote and an occasional black bear. The diversity of wildlife is impressive. Rocky outcrops reveal the beautiful vistas to the north, south and east.

The Quinnipiac (Blue) Trail connects the public and private properties that make up this stunning landform. One of the most noteworthy places along the trail is Roaring Brook Falls the state's highest single drop waterfall (80 feet). A list of the ridge properties follows.

Land Trust Properties - 79 Acres ( highlighted in green on map )

  1. Helen Russell Memorial - 40 acres
  2. Clark - Blue Trail Access - 1 acre
  3. Nettleton's Ravine - 14 acres
  4. Tom Pool - 24 acres

Town / State Properties - 252 acres ( highlighted in pink on map )

  1. Roaring Brook - 85 acres
  2. Bens Homestead - 56 acres (Abutts CLT's Tom Pool Preserve)
  3. Clark - Nettleton's Ravine & Naugatuck State Forest - 111 acres

 

 

 

 

Webmaster: Tim Slocum

Site last updated: June 26, 2013