We go. Not everyday, not unsafely, not always to a trail, park, or other open space. Spaces under blue skies, in the sun, with the breeze blowing softly through the trees. Where birds chirp, woodpeckers hammer trees, the fox trots by, stopping on the woods edge to look back and see your salute to her freedom.
Here in Ledyard, in fact anywhere here in Southeastern Connecticut, there are plenty of places to get out, shake off the cabin fever of waiting for a turning of the virus.
The problem may be the plenty part, as in too many cars at this trail head, too many others already in the park, too many…
But, there are still plenty of open spaces. I walk, now, most often on a few streets near my home. Streets that are safe, there aren’t very many of those in Ledyard because of the traffic even in this time of reduced commuting, and aren’t congested with others walking them.
I’ve changed the time of day that I’m walking, yes, even those walks near home, to not be out when others without the freedom to pick very early or very late times to get out might want to walk. And, this may be the appropriate time to mention that since we’re not exercising social distancing, or wearing face masks, in the house my wife and I walk together many times – with masks or similar barriers and social distancing ready to use if we meet others on narrow pathways.
Here are some Ledyard suggestions for walks: Colonel Ledyard Park Trail, Nathan Lester Park, Poquetanuck Cove Preserve, Pike-Marshall Preserve, Burton Property, Avery Preserve, and 5 others. Go to the Ledyard Parks and Recreation website for a printable booklet of these hikes.
Going further afield there is the Connecticut College Arboretum, Denison Pequot Nature Center and Coogan Farm, Barn Island, Stenger Farm Park, Sprague Land Preserve, Valley Falls Park, and 27 trails in North Stonington. All have additional information and maps available online. Moving even further out are Kettle Pond, Ninigret, and Thurston Pond in Rhode Island.
When you plan one of these outings you should have several nearby alternatives in the event your first choice appears overcrowded. The more vehicles at a trailhead can be a good indicator of trail usage. This is especially true for trails you’re walking for the first time.
I’ll be back next week with more tips and trail suggestions…
Until then; Be Safe, Be Well, Distance, Mask!!