Bigelow Hollow State Park
|Bigelow Hollow State Park|
|Connecticut state park|
Bigelow Pond on September 8, 2005
|Location||Town of Union|
|- elevation||741 ft (226 m) |
|Management||Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection|
Bigelow Hollow State Park, in Union, Connecticut is a Connecticut state park surrounded by Nipmuck State Forest, and bordering Mashapaug Lake. There are picnic benches, beaches, and a boat launch, plus miles of hiking trails. This picture of Bigelow Pond is the first body of water you would see on the left of the park entrance. Most visitors spend their time at 300-acre (1.2 km2) Mashapaug Lake near the end of the main road.
The park's 600 acres (2.4 km2) is surrounded by some 40,000 acres (160 km2) of forest. This includes 9,000 acres (36 km2) in the Nipmuck State Forest, nearly 8,000 acres (32 km2) in the Yale Forest, 13,000 acres (53 km2) in the Natchaug State Forest, 4,000 acres (16 km2) of the Norcross Wildlife Refuge and the 7,000 acres (28 km2) of forest held by Hull Foresters. This makes it one of largest forests in Southern New England and some of the largest unbroken tracts of forest as well.
The park and forest is located in a large hollow or depression. The valley floor is approximately 700' below the surrounding ridgelines making the area exceptionally scenic. Fishing, picnicking and hiking are all popular here.
Hiking is also popular. The park features over 35 miles (56 km) of trails, including several that go around 92-acre Breakneck Pond, a secluded & undeveloped lake only accessible by foot. Be sure to have a trail map and potentially a compass to find your way if you get lost. The park is mostly evergreen at lower elevations and the forest density can be so thick that you can lose the trail. The scenic beauty of the park and forest is well worth exploring.
Camping is allowed in the back country of the surrounding Nipmuck State Forest but not in the park.
- "Bigelow Hollow State Park". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. 1979-09-12. Retrieved 2012-12-21.
- "Bigelow State Park and Nipmuck State Forest". Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- "Snowmobiling in Connecticut". Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection. Retrieved 2013-02-05.
- Bigelow Hollow State Park Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection
- Bigelow Hollow State Park Mountain Bike Trail Reviews
- Thomas Gilly trip report[dead link]
- Many pictures of Bigelow Pond taken over several years.[dead link]