The Mattatuck Blue Blazed Trail


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Mattatuck Trail Mohawk Mountain
Mattatuck Trail Mohawk Mountain

The Mattatuck mainline trail is a 36 Mile Blue Blazed Trail. It's Southern point begins at the Waterbury reservoirs in Wolcott and passes through: Plymouth Thomaston, Watertown, Morris, and Litchfield. It is Fragmented in Litchfield, but picks up again in Cornwall, drops into Goshen for a few miles and finishes at a junction with The Mohawk trail in Cornwall.

Along the trail you will pass through the Mattutuck State Forest, Black Rock State Park, and The White Memorial Foundation and Conservation Center. The word Mattatuck is American Indian and means loosely: the place without trees. The place refereed to is now Waterbury. But, in a historic irony land which now makes up the Mattatuck State Forest and Black Rock State Park was deforested; the wood being used as fuel for foundries and brass milling in the nearby Naugatuck Valley.

While we lament the loss of heavy industry in Connecticut, it is fair to consider the cost of industry on our environment. During the Depression, the Civilian Conservation Corp embarked on a massive reforestation project - planting tens of thousands of trees and instituting erosion control.




Section 1 - Buttermilk Falls

Mattatuck Trail Buttermilk Falls
Mattatuck Trail Buttermilk Falls
Coursing through The Mattatuck State Forest in Thomaston and Watertown, The Mattatuck Trail is one of Connecticut's Blue Blazed Trails. The section in Terryville and Plymouth includes Buttermilk Falls - a 60ft three tier waterfall. This section also passes two caves and a large pond.

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Section 3 - The Mattatuck State Forest & Legend of the Leatherman

By Morrowlong (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
By Morrowlong (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Section 3 traverses The Mattatuck State Forest and Black Rock State Park. It is a loop trail and is moderately strenuous. The pine forests that cover this section of trail make it ideal for any season. Two lookouts provide good vistas. The trail also passes through a cave that the legendary and mysterious Leatherman slept in once every 34 days. The lore of the Leatherman has reached far enough to become known to Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam, who wrote a song entitled: Leatherman.

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Section 5 - White Memorial Foundation Preserve

Mattatuck Trail White Memorial Preserve
Mattatuck Trail White Memorial Preserve

The 6.5 miles of the Mattatuck which passes through the white Memorial Foundation is the 5th section of the overall trail. The White Memorial Foundation is a 4000+ acre wildlife sanctuary. It includes a vast network of supplementary trails to the Mattatuck. The trail along this section is wide and easy. Any level hiker will be comfortable hiking this section. This section is also open to bicycling.

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Section 7 - Mohawk Mountain State Park


Mattatuck Trail Mohawk Mountain
Mattatuck Trail Mohawk Mountain
Section 7 of the Mattatuck travels through Mohawk Mountain State Park to its termination at a junction with The Mohawk Blue Blazed Trail. This section of trail is not well traveled and includes two difficult rocky climbs. The are several interesting features along this section including a 360 panoramic view from the summit of Mohawk Mtn, and the ruins of Cunningham Tower - an bizarre pet project of the former wealthy owner of this land.

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Mattatuck Trail Overview

COUNTY: Litchfield, Hartford
COMMUNITIES:  Plymouth Thomaston, Watertown, Morris,
Litchfield, Goshen, Cornwall

TOTAL MILES: 36 Miles

POINTS OF INTEREST: Buttermilk Falls, Indian Jack Cave, Leatherman's Cave, Crane's Lookout, Prospect Mountain, Mohawk Mountain, Cunningham Tower

ARTICLE LINKS: The Mattatuck Trail & The Legend of The Leatherman - Connecticut Explorer
The Mattatuck Trail - Buttermilk Falls - Connecticut Explorer

SECTION 1: BUTTERMILK FALLS 5 Miles Mad River Road to South Main Street Indian Jack Cave Buttermilk Falls

SECTION 2: MOUNT TOBE South Main Street to Reynolds Bridge 7 Miles Mount Tobe

SECTION 3: MATTATUCK FOREST Reynolds Bridge to Northfield Road 4.7 Miles Branch Brook Leatherman's Cave Crane's Lookout

SECTION 4: WATERBURY RESEVOIRS Northfield Road to Slab Meadow Road 5 Miles Fenn Brook Waterfall

SECTION 5: WHITE MEMORIAL FOUNDATION Slab Meadow Road to Bissell Road 6.3 Miles

SECTION 6: PROSPECT MOUNTAIN Cathole Road to Prospect Mountain Road 2 Miles Prospect Mountain

SECTION 7: MOHAWK MOUNTAIN Flat Rocks Road to Mohawk Trail 6 Miles Mohawk Mountain Cunningham Tower The Pinnacle


Mattatuck Trail Map

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