Pomfret Forest Trail System Open to the Public
October 20, 2021, Pomfret, CT….On October 17th, Pomfret First Selectman Maureen Nicholson and Quiet Corner NEMBA (New England Mountain Bike Association) officially opened the new multi-use trail system at Pomfret Forest. The day’s event was geared to mountain bikers--the user group that has volunteered over 1,200 hours since this April to build almost 8 miles of trail to be enjoyed by all in the community and the region. QC NEMBA’s event welcomed riders from 4 states to visit Pomfret. Almost 150 mountain bikers of all ability levels had an amazing time, rolling through the Town’s beautiful property.
This event was part of The Last Green Valley’s “Walktober” series and the annual fundraiser for this small but active chapter of NEMBA. On a donation basis, participants gave almost $1,600 to the chapter to continue its work in northeastern CT to “Ride, Preserve & Build” in accordance with the non-profit organization’s mission. Participants were treated to offerings from generous local sponsors, including apples from Lapsley Orchard, donuts and coffee from Baker’s Dozen, snacks from FritoLay, plus gift certificates and “swag” for a drawing from Pedal Power Willimantic, Grill 37, The Vanilla Bean Café, Pizza 101, Watercure Farm Distillery, Bear Hands Brewing, Greg Kalafus, and Putnam Cyclery--which also donated time on-site at the event for mechanical support. Gwyn Careg Inn graciously provided overflow parking. QC NEMBA wants to ensure that visitors to Pomfret Forest support local business.
Pomfret Forest is open to hikers, trail runners, dog walkers (on leash), mountain bikers and equestrians. The 150-acre parcel of land on Wolf Den Road near Gwyn Careg Inn was recently acquired by the Town of Pomfret, which has partnered with QC NEMBA to let them build almost 8 miles of trails in a wooded setting adjacent to the Air Line Trail State Park. Trail users can navigate using the TrailForks.com phone app (search for Pomfret Forest) or just wander and explore the scenic property. Trails are currently unmarked but will eventually be blazed and the property will offer kiosks with a map and user group information.
“This is a unique opportunity to provide additional trails for recreational use of all types. Thanks to NEMBA, mountain bike / multi use trails are a new--and very popular--addition to our trail system and puts us on the map as a destination,” says Nicholson. “ We have seen unprecedented trail activity over the past 18 months, and I believe people will continue to enjoy Pomfret’s outdoor activities for the foreseeable future.”
Hikers and nature lovers can now experience a previously inaccessible area of beautiful deciduous forest, groves of mountain laurel plus interesting plantings, specimen trees, and historical artifacts from the property’s history as part of the Gwyn Careg Estate. Novice mountain bike riders can enjoy winding trails with limited elevation and “go-arounds” at features. Advanced mountain bikers will love fun, hand-built challenges at Pomfret Forest such as skinnies, bridges, berms, rocky ridges and rollers. Direct access to the Airline Trail through Pomfret Forest allows trail users to also enjoy 20+ miles of gravel rail trail plus the ability to reach trails in Natchaug and Goodwin State Forests for a truly epic adventure.
Quiet Corner NEMBA is grateful to the dedication of their many volunteers, who did an incredible amount of work in just 6 months, and to NEMBA for a Signature Trail Grant, which made the trail build possible. They also thank the Town of Pomfret for supporting the preservation of open space, passive recreation, and outdoor fun for the community and visitors.
For more info about Quiet Corner NEMBA, visit www.nemba.org/chapters/qcnemba. To support the chapter, please donate to QCNEMBA’s PayPal through Trailforks: https://www.trailforks.com/region/windham-county-8905/karma/.