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Nepaug State Forest

Connecticut Mountain Bike Trails
Western Region

Directions & description

Location: Near New Hartford / Burlington. 20 miles west of Hartford, Connecticut

Length/Configuration: 1,199 acres. Network of trails.

Terrain/Surface: Network of hard-packed sandy dirt roads and narrow singletrack. Rolling terrain.

Technical Difficulty: Intermediate to advanced mountain bike skills required. Technically challenging. Short steep ascents and descents.

Elevation Change: Elevations vary from 450 to 1,000 ft.

Trail Use: mountain biking, hiking, horse-back riding.

Caution: Watch out for cars and hunting is allowed in season.

 

 

 

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Note: The free trail maps on this website have been simplified to provide an overview with approximate locations of trails and special features. Read Full Disclaimer.

Directions:

At the junction of US 202 and US 44, head west on 202 for approximately 3 miles. Look for an unpaved road on the right with a brown Nepaug State Forest sign. Enter here and look for parking at turnoffs up the road a bit.

 

General Description:

Nepaug State Forest bordering on the Nepaug Reservoir and the Farmington River consists of two tracts of land totaling 1198 acres of mixed hardwoods, pine and spruce plantations and small swampy areas. A part of the Forest borders the State Fish Hatchery, where trout are raised.

 

The Trails:

This small, scenic forest offers many hard-packed off-road trails and some sandy dirt roads interconnected by a maze of narrow, winding, technically challenging singletrack trails. You may have to hike-a-bike in some places. The deeper into the forest you go, the more challenging it gets.

Take a good map with you and check in with the Park office. If you are navigationally challenged like me, it can be easy to get lost.

A favorite ride of the "locals" is to ride the Tunxis trail northward to Satans Kingdom and turn off at the end onto the side trails. They cap off the ride with a fun, quick descent to the river for a swim. A good spot for swimming is located at the end of Satans Kingdom Road.

 

Other Area Activities:

Satan's Kingdom Recreation Area

The best way to cool down after your mountain bike ride is to head to Satan's Kingdom State Recreation Area, located on Route 44 in New Hartford, Connecticut. This area of the Farmington River offers some great river tubing, rafting, kayaking and canoeing. The highlight of the river run is the Satans Kingdom Gorge rapids. Enjoy a relaxed, leisurely float for most of the two-and-a-half-mile ride downriver, and then thrills as you shoot through three sets of rapids. I've done this run many times. Lifeguards are on duty where the water is turbulent. There are Outdoor Adventure Outfitters who rent tubes and provide shuttle service to and from river.

This is not for young children. You must be at least 10 years old, at least 4'5" tall, and know how to swim well. The current gets strong in places.

 

Historical Note:

Satans Kingdom, originally an Indian encampment, in 1780 had the reputation of being an asylum for criminals and evildoers of all descriptions. From this population, who eked out a precarious existence by hunting, fishing and stealing, Satan's Kingdom took it's name.

 

 

For more information:

Department of Environmental Protection:
Bureau of Outdoor Recreation
State Parks Division
79 Elm Street
Hartford, Connecticut 06106

Phone: (860) 424-3200
TTY: 711 (AT&T National Relay Services)

 

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