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  1. #1
    Senior Member Papa Tom's Avatar
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    Fine-Tuning This Year's CT Ride: Info on Bluff Point/Haley Farm Trails Needed!

    OK, Iíve just made this summerís reservation in Mystic. Itís not until July, but I want to clarify one segment of my new route before I etch it in stone. This alternate route is all about not trespassing in Mumford Cove, Groton Long Point, and Noank, as I apparently did last year.

    So, Iíve just turned right off Buddington Road onto Rt. 1. I get on the Poquonnock Bridge Boardwalk and I take it to the end. At the end, I turn right onto Depot Road, go under the railroad bridge and continue all the way to the parking lot. Hereís where I get a little foggy.

    It appears I have to turn left into the woods immediately after the parking lot. Is this a clearly marked path, or do I have to look for signs of someone having cut through the woods here?

    Assuming I get on the right trail, it eventually curves right and skirts the railroad tracks. Ultimately, it (sort of) meets up with the G&S Trolley Trail. Will I actually SEE the G&S Trolley bridge to my left as a cue? Otherwise, how do I know where to turn left to connect with the G&S? I see there is some sort of building on the right, perhaps a house or a municipal garage?

    Next, after I curse myself out for ever thinking this was a good way to go, and after I cross the G&S Trolley Trail bridge, it appears I will pass two utility poles and then have to turn right into the woods again. Is THIS entrance to the woods clearly marked?

    From here, it seems to get a little simpler. I follow this trail out to Haley Farm Lane and go straight. Then I make a right onto Brook Street, follow it to the water and turn left onto Rt. 215, which will take me the rest of the way.

    Google Maps doesnít always provide an accurate picture of these wooded areas. The whole Bluff Point/Haley Farm area looks like thick forest with bears and snakes and monsters. I wouldnít be surprised if the bike trail turns out to be primped and pruned and brimming with joggers and dog-walkers. At the very least, can somebody describe these bike trails? Should I use my knobby tires for this yearís trip?

    Thank you!
    Papa Tom

    "I just need a rest...and by 'rest' I mean a really long bicycle ride."

  2. #2
    Senior Member cdale56's Avatar
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    Next, after I curse myself out for ever thinking this was a good way to
    You are correct, but it is is more scenic and better than the Rte 1 hill climb.

    Here is a map of the route you describe, I left out the boardwalk. The path starts at Knoxville Court and I have rarely seen anybody on the path and see more deer than people. The path used to go to dirt after about a mile (and had some awful sand patches) but they extended the pavement so you don't have to worry about that.

    milermeter.com

    The woods road thru Haley Farm State park is decent through I haven't ridden there in a while.

    Don't know about knobbies and a loaded a bike. I will get out there and see. This woods road has a steel gate and is hard to miss, there are side foot trails but these are technical MTB trails and have no gates.

    With all that said, the way I would go is to go straight, past the Haley Farm woods road and go across the old tolley bridge and down Mumford Cove Rd, This is the road that our fellow bike forums poster said was private. Not sure about that, but there are a few signs. I did this for years and never had a problem.

    With all that said II, why not just skip Buddington and go straight on 184 to Ledyard/Noank Rd and go down to Mystic that way? If you are looking for a few more miles scenery you could do a loop down to Groton Long Point, it would be an 'in and out' but nice and worth it, unlike Mumford Cove-where all you see are houses-you get some good views down there.

    This a route from the New London bridge to Mystic going that way.

    milermeter.com

    If you would like company for this leg PM me.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Papa Tom's Avatar
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    Thanks for your hard work, cdale. To bring you up to speed, last year, I did the whole Mumford Cove/Groton long Point detour and loved it. However, now that I've been given the impression the folks who live in those places didn't love me, I decided to try something different.

    I don't mind the woods, as long as they don't get crazy sandy. I am riding a mountain bike with Specialized Nimbus slicks, but I can always pop my knobbies on. I believe, having done this ride about a dozen times, I've knobbed it before. My bike will only have a rack trunk with small, fold-out panniers, so I'll be FAR from "loaded."

    I am really into scenery, particularly water views, when I take these little excursions. Last year's route was a primo "water ride." so I don't expect to match it this year. However, a quiet wooded area could be a cool thing to clear my head of work noises (I set up summer park concerts just about every night from July to mid-August). However, if I'm going to be pushing my bike through sand pits and rattling my bones with big tree roots, I may reconsider. When you said "the path used to go to dirt," did you mean the G&S Trolley Trail? I rode it last year to the bridge, then cut through the woods onto a road I believe was called Neptune. Eventually, I went through Mumford Cove, Groton Point, etc. and on toward Mystic. I only remember the G&S going to dirt for a short distance. The rest was in fairly decent shape.

    Another point I should make is that my ride usually continues beyond Mystic. When I had an extra day or two, I used to head up to Narragansett, RI and spend a night there. Then I started to just head up there for lunch and turn around. I always hated leaving there once at the water, so I cut that out altogether and started hitting other destinations north and east of Mystic. Last year, I touched my wheels down in Westerly (just to say I had made it to Rhode Island) and headed back to Mystic for the night. My point is that, if the route through Bluff Point/Haley Farm is going to be a dud, I can always add some scenery to the part of my ride after Mystic, then just head back to Mystic for the night.

    So, now that I've said all that, do you think I'm making a mistake?

    (PS: Your alternate route from New London looks cool, but there's something I really like about Buddington Road.)
    Papa Tom

    "I just need a rest...and by 'rest' I mean a really long bicycle ride."

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