Tag Archives: brook

Richardson Brook Wildlife Sanctuary (Tolland, MA)

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Date Visited: August 20, 2016

Location: New Boston Rd. (Route 57) Tolland, MA

Hours: Open everyday, 24 hours and day

Parking: There is not a designated parking lot or parking area.  You have to pull over to the side of the road on Route 57.

Cost: There is no fee but donations are appreciated

Trail Difficulty: Easy

Size: We took the 1.6 mile Brook nd Charlotte trail loops

Dog Friendly: Technically, no, MA Audubon does not allow dogs on their trails.  But, I suspect people do bring their dogs.

Highlights: brook, secluded, trails are not very steep, short and easy trail

Lowlights: trails are a little hard to follow (look for the blue and yellow marked trees), lack of visible wildlife, hard to find especially if you don’t have a passenger to help you look for it

Richardson Brook Wildlife Sanctuary

Richardson Brook Wildlife Sanctuary Trail Map

Richardson Brook is not the easiest trail to find.  In fact, it took a few turnarounds and nifty parking to find a safe place to park and enter the trail.

The trail for Richardson Brook is pretty easy.  The only catch is looking for the marked trees to follow since the trail is not clearly defined all the time and it can get a little confusing, even with the markings on the trees to follow. It could be very easy to get lost.  Visions of Camp Crystal Lake flashed before my eyes a few times.

The big payoff is the brook which was not running very hard during my visit.  But it was still very pretty.

We saw some little critters and colorful mushrooms along the way.

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Water bugs, frogs, salamanders and baby salamanders were abundant, even if they did try to camouflage themselves.

Although we did not see many birds we did hear them and we did see evidence of other animals.  I am also convinced that if you were determined to find other wildlife you wouldn’t be disappointed.  If you had a lot of time to spend and you went off trail you could definitely find bigger wildlife.  Just look out for Jason!

The video below of Richardson Brook really captures the beauty of the trail.

Similar Places I Have Visited In New England:

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Cascading Waters (Worcester, MA)

 


Natural Bridge State Park (North Adams, MA)

The bridges of Western Massachusetts are not just the ones you see on the roadways. But, don’t let the name fool you.  The Natural Bridge State Park has so much more to offer.

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Before you reach the natural bridge, a brook greets you at the entrance.

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Formed through series of continental collisions, erosion and the meltwaters caused by the Ice Age, the natural marble bridge is the only one of its kind in North America.

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Deep crevices and chasms were carved through the years of erosion and warming and cooling.

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The only marble bridge in North America, the natural bridge in North Adams is located just off the The Mohawk Trail. 

Adding to the beauty of the natural bridge, the park has a waterfall.

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The Natural Bridge State Park also has impressive views of the bridge and the park it overlooks.

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There are many flowers, trees, rocks, bridges (a bridge on a bridge of all things) and even David’s Bench that give the Natural Bridge State Park a special charm.

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During our travels, we met Sasha.

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Just as you think you’ve seen all the Natural Bridge State Park has to offer there is a small park area atop the walking bridge.  Statues and other structures made from the materials mined from the one time quarry rest along the top of the lofty bridge.  It capped off a perfect visit.

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Granville State Forest (Granville, MA)

Granville State Forest is 2,000 plus acre state forest and campground located in, you guessed it Granville, Massachusetts.  Be advised, the trails are long in between the various ponds, brooks and various other attractions.  But, you can drive on the unpaved roads if walking isn’t your style.

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Located about 45 minutes from Springfield, MA, Granville State Forest was once a popular hunting spot for the Tunxis.  I didn’t run into Tunxis during this visit.  But, I did see some stunning views.  Take this waterfall, for instance.

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But, to really get a sense of the beauty of the Hubbard River, one must get off the beaten path, or bridge as it were in this case.

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It’s amazing the things you see when you get off the main path.  Like this Frog with his lunch.

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Or this artful graffiti, especially the curse words.  It’s vary quaint.  Oh, you crazy kids.  At least I hope it was kids who wrote it.

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There are also an abundance of pretty flowers and trees.

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About a mile from the bridge over the Hubbard stream, there is the two acre Bahre Pond.  Bahre Pond has some pretty views.

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It is also teeming with wildlife, like this water snake.

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And this frog who thought he could hide from me.

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Granville State Park also has some paths off the main trails that have some hidden gems.

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The main attraction at Granville State Forest has to be the waterfall.  Below is a short video of the waterfall in all its splendor.


Chester-Blandford State Forest (Chester, MA)

After photographing a variety of mountainous, rocky state parks, I thought it was time to mix it up and visit a rocky, hilly waterfall.  Initially, we planned on visiting CM Gardner State Park.  But, the helpful park rangers at CM Gardner suggested something more picturesque, Chester-Blandford State Forest.

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Since it encompasses such a large area (over 2,700 acres), Chester-Blandford has several entrances.  The first part of the park we arrived at, Boulder Park, is a rather small area with a pond and a few ill defined trails.  But, right from the rocky steps and mossy trails at the entrance it has a unique charm.

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The trails also have some unique walkways and structures.

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The highlight of the park may be the deep opening off the main trail.

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Boulder Rock also has some eye catching plants and wild life.

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The pond near the end of the main trail was a nice surprise.

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Boulder Rock also had its share of wildlife such as this salamander and mouse.

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Alas, our trip to Boulder Rock was over.  But, about a mile down the road another entrance beckoned us, the main entrance to the Sanderson Brooks Falls trail of Chester-Blandford.

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Pitcuresque views are scattered along the Brooks Falls trail.

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Due to the lack of rain recently, the rapids weren’t very, well, rapid.  But, the relatively still water and rocky brook provided some good shots.

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Sanderson Brook Falls also had a fair share of wildlife such as caterpillars,

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Toads

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and dogs, like Loona.

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After a roughly half an hour trek along some rocky terrain, a number of bridges and some steep inclines, I made it to the falls.   DSC_0338  DSC_0340   DSC_0354  DSC_0352 DSC_0351  DSC_0344  DSC_0341

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The brooks and falls are sure to be more active during the stormy seasons.  But, it is still impressive and worth the trip.

To get the full effect of the falls, click on the short video below.

Is there anywhere in the New England area you would like me to visit?

What are some of your favorite waterfalls?

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