Kettletown State Park

Even though I only saw a fraction of Kettletown State Park, I can clearly see it is a natural treasure hidden in Southbury Ct. With the trails still covered with ice on the gorgeous 50 degree day, we opted to stay mostly on the paved trails or the boardwalk. Even without trekking uphill to experience the multiple scenic views, we were not at a loss of wonder and awe. Former home of the Pootatuck Indians, early colonists earned access to the 65 acres by trading them one Brass Kettle, and although those with a CT registration may park and use the land for free today, that still seems like the early settlers still got the land for a steal.

Upon stepping out of the car and entering the road, closed to cars for the off season, we first came upon the beautiful sight of two connecting streams. Being it was early February, I told my daughter they were called the Valentine Streams because they come together as one. She thought that was cool until I told her I just made it up and then she thought it was a dumb name. Who hurt her?

As we proceeded down the paved road toward the camping area, we walked parallel to the beginning of the Blue/Green trail, which was lower with better views of the stream along side. Much of the side had beautiful layers of frozen runoff water that will probably be gone by the next time we get back to visit and walk along the actual trails. There were some brave or prepared people (with spikes) walking along the trail, but I saw one lady being helped by a gentleman who looked like she might have been hurt, and a group of young, maybe 20 somethings, who I got to watch laugh at each other for slipping and nearly falling a few times. Overall, the view from the paved path did not seem insufficient enough to risk a torn miniscus, or having to drag a cranky 9 year old who now hates me because I may have laughed before I helped her up.

Growing up camping in North/South Lake in the Catskills New York, I wasn’t that ecstatic about the actual campsites that I encountered. They were wide open with no privacy between but on the website it did say they offered both open and wooded options. I also only saw one campsite offering electric. There were RV and pop-up sites, but they were standard non-electric. I did see a row of cabins facing the river, although there were campsites in between that would hinder the view.

You didn’t need to walk far to get a closer glimpse of the river though.

On this unseasonable warm day, us city slickers were surprised to see so many people walking across what looked to us like a melting surface.

And although we were not going to join them out in the deep, my daughter did enjoy playing ecologist and measuring the depth towards the shoreline.

Overall this was a great time, despite the disappointment of missing out on much of the hike, and we cannot wait to go back! We want to experience more of the views and check out the charcoal hearth. Have you been to Kettletown State Park yet? Did you like it, have a favorite spot or just some interesting knowledge about the land you want to share?

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