This is a prominent "blue-blazed trail" managed by the Connecticut Forest & Parks Association (CFPA). The following description is courtesy of the CFPA "Connecticut Walk Book". It runs 50 miles N-S from the Cobalt section of East Hampton, CT to West Stafford, CT just shy of the Massachusetts border. The trail traverses the Meshomasic and Shenipsit State Forests primarily on woodland paths and also connects to trail systems in Gay City State Park in Hebron, Case Mountain Recreation Area in Manchester, and Valley Falls Park in Vernon. Points of interest include a junction with the Hop River Rail Trail in Bolton, and scenic sections on the banks of the Tankerhoosen River in Vernon's Belding and Tankerhoosen Wildlife Management Area. There are spectacular views of Great Hill Pond and the CT River elsewhere along the trail, and of Hartford from the summit of Case Mountain, along with excellent views to the west, north, and southwest from the fire tower on Soapstone Mountain in Somers.
50 miles; 5900' vertical gain
- Submitted by Cherie Bilbie
The duathlon (submitted by Scott Livingston) means running the Shenipsit end-to-end and closing the loop by bicycle. There is no specific route (roads or trail) for the bicycle leg, but note that bicycles are NOT permitted on the Shenipsit Trail (or any of the other Connecticut Blue-Blazed Hiking Trails). Even though you can get to the Hop River Linear Trail and the Air Line Trail, these rail trails are a bit out of the way and it makes more sense to just take roads that you are comfortable with. There are many options. The East Coast Greenway/Charter Oak Greenway are also an option for a portion of the route, but there are more efficient/faster ways to navigate between the northern and southern ends of the trail. It's about 38 miles of cycling with ~ 2200' of elevation gain.