From the west: I-84 to the Rt.7 exit. Follow Rt.7 to Rt.202 in New Milford and turn east.
Located in the northwestern Connecticut hills, The White Memorial Conservation Center & Museum, is a great place to go mountain biking with the whole family. Combine a ride with a fun, educational experience. More than 35 miles of trails, travelling through varied terrain are open year-round for hiking, mountain biking, cross country skiing and horseback riding.
The Center was created in 1913 by Litchfield residents, Alain C. White and his sister, May W. White in order to preserve the natural habitat surrounding Bantam Lake and it's diverse natural population of flora and fauna. Deer, rabbits, wild turkey, beavers, water fowl, great blue herons and over 200 species of birds thrive here.
Today,The White Memorial Foundation & Conservation Center encompasses 4,000 acres of fields, waters and woodlands, 35 miles of trails, a nature museum, two distinct areas for family camping, boating facilities, swimming at Sandy Beach located on Bantam Lake, meeting houses, dormitories and special areas for large outdoor educational and recreational gatherings.
The Conservation Center's new Nature Museum takes you on a "Journey through White Memorial". Detailed dioramas tell the story of this unique 4,000 acre wildlife refuge - its history and many diverse habitats. The Center's full-time profesional staff and volunteers offer educational programs year- round. Special emphasis is given to children's activities and the museum houses a special section for them.
Mountain biking is allowed only on the woods road trails, not the foot trails. Trails wind over a diverse terrain, through a variety of habitats. Some gently roll through fields, woodlands and skirt along edges of beaver ponds and marshy areas. Some make for a more challenging mountain bike adventure, travelling over sections of rocky and hilly terrain requiring steep short climbs and descents. Others travel predominantly through forest.
There are so many trails to explore. I have only shown and highlighted a few possibilities. The simplified map above is by no means complete. The White Memorial Foundation & Conservation Center offers an excellent, complete detailed trail map with descriptions for a small fee. (see For More Information below).
Mattatuck Trail: (blue rectangle blaze) 6 miles
Travels on mostly doubletrack through different habitats over a variety of terrain on it's course. You wil encounter long flat stretches, moderate to short steep hill climbs and descents, sections with loose rocks and other minor obstructions. The trail crosses the Bantam River, winds past ponds through natural areas and wetlands. This is a great mountain bike trail to get an overview of the varied habitat of this beautiful Preserve.
Beaver Pond Trail: (white rectangle blaze) 2.8 miles
Hilly, forest, brook, pond, marsh and beavers.
Windmill Hill Trail: (green rectangle blaze) .9 miles
Lake Trail: (yellow) 1.0 miles
Hilly, forest, brook, lake and marsh
Trail Riders : (green rectangle blaze) .9 miles
Hilly, forest, brook
Big Cathedral Trail: (orange rectangle blaze) 1.3 miles
Hilly, forest, brook, rocky
West Cornwall Covered Bridge:
On the east side of US7, in town of West Cornwall, take CT128 to the bridge. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, The West Cornwall Covered Bridge, built in 1864, spans the Housatonic River at West Cornwall. This historic, barn red bridge is one of only three remaining historic covered bridges in Connecticut.
For more information:
The White Memorial Foundation and Conservation Center
Phone: (860) 567-0857