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Walking Through Branford

Walking Through Branford

No matter where you live in Branford, you are not far from a walking trail that allows for fresh air, beautiful scenery and historic sites. Branford has an impressive number of trails to explore; to date there are over 100! Residents of all ages have a safe, no-cost way to incorporate exercise into their daily lives, avoid congested streets, and experience the natural and historic beauty of this quaint town.

Of the numerous trails throughout Branford, Shoreline Greenway Trail is one of the most highly anticipated. This trail, once complete, will be a 25-mile continuous path for bicyclists, walkers and hikers on the Connecticut shoreline from Lighthouse Point in New Haven through East Haven, Branford and Guilford to Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison. The newest section of the Shoreline Greenway Trail, at Farm River State Park in East Haven, officially will open to the public for walking, cycling and other activities on Thursday, May 11. As of now, seven completed sections of the trail are complete. This new segment covers a third of a mile at Farm River State Park, and extends this section of the trial to a mile. The Shoreline Greenway Trail website directs visitors on trailheads and parking.

A segment of the Shoreline Greenway Trial will connect with the existing Branford Trail that loops the town.  The Branford Trial is a popular hiking and walking destination. The trail is a partially paved 28-mile walking trail around the perimeter of the town. The trail is divided into eight segments, which makes the trail accessible by every home in Branford by a 15-minute walk. The entire Branford trail is best walked in a counterclockwise direction. Here are short descriptions of the eight trails that make up the entire Branford Trail:

  • The Short Beach section of the trail is four-and-a-half miles long and is the most western neighborhood in Branford. Short Beach is home to half of the Trolley Museum which is shared by neighboring East Haven.
  • Indian Neck is a 3.9-mile section of the Branford Trail that is thought to have been a seasonal home to the Quinnipiac Indian tribe.
  • Pine Orchard is an area that was permanently settled in the 1800s. It comprises several cottage colonies, beautiful estates, summer hotels and the eighteen-hole course of the Pine Orchard Golf Club. There are several paths featured in this section that teach unique history lessons on the Branford area.
  • Stoney Creek is a 4.08-miles long and nestled among the inlets of the Sound. Permanently settled in the 1800s, the area is now considered a fishing village and summer resort. The trail passes through a portion of Thimble Islands, which has a history on its own going back to the Mattabesset Indians.
  • The 3.3- mile section of Quarry-Westwoods trail features a special area where visitors find a collection of “selectman’s stones.” Historically, the First Selectman of each town would walk the town boundary annually. A marker was left with the date and the person’s initials.
  • The North Boundary trail is also adjacent to the town border marker. Viewers can see a large triangular concrete block that shows where the town lines of Branford, North Branford, and Guilford converge.
  • The 4.2-mile section known as Pisgah Brook crosses the Linsley Lake outlet stream. Linsley Lake is famous in the field of ecology for studies done there from the 1930s until the late 1970s by noted Yale biologist George Evelyn Hutchinson.
  • Completing the Branford Trail are the popular trails of Lake Saltonstall. Considered the best trail for spring wildflowers, residents will find beautiful views of the lake year-round. This trail is perfect for jogging, hiking, bicycling and cross-country skiing.

For maps and detailed lists of all walking trails in Branford, click here. Our spacious Montoya apartments are only minutes from some of the best walking trails and beaches in the state. These apartments feature fantastic amenities at an affordable price, but our residents love the fact that we are pet-friendly! If you’re interested in our Montoya apartments or condominiums, contact Jennifer at 203-537-3172.

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