Madison Trail Extension Nearly Complete


The new section will connect Hammonasset Beach State Park with Madison’s Webster Point Road (Susan Rianhard photo)

A westward extension of the Shoreline Greenway Trail from Hammonasset Beach State Park is nearing completion, bringing the ability to safely bike or walk between the park and downtown Madison without using Route 1 a step closer to reality. The 750-foot extension, connecting the existing one-mile trail in Hammonasset with Webster Point Road, is expected to open in early 2016. When complete, it will allow walkers, hikers and bikers to use the trail and local roads rather than a dangerous stretch of Route 1 to travel between Hammonasset, downtown Madison, and Madison’s beaches, shoreline recreational facilities and tourist destinations. Check back soon or sign up for email notifications, and we’ll let you know when the new trail is open!

Webster Point Road extension bridge with Perry Rainhard

A cyclist stops by say hello to Perry Rianhard, SGT Trailmaster, as he works on the bridge on the trail section connecting Hammonasset Beach State Park to Webster Point Road

Nov 7th ‘First Saturday’ Walk in East Haven


Come see the future home of a 1/2 mile pedestrian boardwalk!

Saturday, November 7th, 10 am

Hike thru picturesque woods with SGT leaders Barbara Brow and Mike Gambardella, at D. C. Moore School to an overview of the Bradford Preserve, the future home of a 1/2 mile pedestrian boardwalk along our completed 1500 ft. granite topped trail to our trailhead parking area, onto Pevetty Drive to Farm River State Park, peaceful and pristine. Osprey nests, caves, and spectacular water views. Two steep areas. 1.5 miles, 1.5 hours. Directions: from 142 West, left onto Mansfield Grove Road to stop sign, right onto Hoop Pole Lane to second school parking lot on left.  From Coe Avenue take a left to Myrtle Street, right at stop sign, quick left onto Elliot Street, and right to school parking lot. Questions, call Barbara Brow 203-469-9127

Your Dog Will Dig Our August ‘First Saturday’ Walk


Chelsea Anderson and Bella at her first parade, celebrating Guilford's Centennial (2014).

Chelsea Anderson and Bella at her first parade, celebrating Guilford’s Centennial (2014).

Saturday, August 1st, 9:00 am, Guilford.  (Please note SGT walk postcard listed incorrect date.)  Hike with your dog!  Grab your best four legged friend and join us for a hike at the East River Preserve, a 583-acre conservation area purchased by the Town of Guilford in 2009. We’ll hit the Blue Trail, which goes through open meadows and tree covered trails. Dogs must be on leash and socialized to walk with other animals. Please bring water for you and your pet and don’t forget poop bags. Meet by the bridge at the end of Sullivan Drive. Parking is limited so please car pool. Contact: Jo-Anne Basile,


Eagle Candidate Installs Rain Garden at Trailhead

Eric's team at work

Eric’s team at work

There is a new rain garden in the trailhead parking lot in Madison, and soon there will be a new Eagle Scout in Guilford. For his Eagle project Guilford Boy Scout Eric Weidman successfully sought donations of plant materials from a variety of sources. Clinton Nurseries and Susan Conlan donated trees and shrubbery, Hammonasset Park provided mulch, and Van Wilgen’s offered a discount. He marshaled a small army of other scouts, friends, and family, and finally in two and a half hours on Father’s Day Eric and his team planted the garden, a spectacular accomplishment!

Landscape architect Barbara Yaeger volunteered to mentor Eric as he worked on his project. The design for the rain garden was created by Yaeger in collaboration with Madison Director of Public Works and Town Engineer Mike Ott, who volunteered to design the parking lot.

Eric directs the placement of trees.

Eric in foreground directs the placement of trees.

What is a rain garden and why have one in the parking lot, you might ask. Rainwater washing across a parking lot carries a variety of pollutants such as fertilizer, bacteria, debris, toxic chemicals, and other substances. In addition, fresh water pouring into the salt marsh alters the salinity and threatens the survival of the marsh.

For our rain garden Yaeger selected plants for their ability to tolerate wetness after storms and dryness during intervals between storms. When it rains, water from the lot runs into the rain garden catching sediment, pollutants, and bacteria before they get to the nearby salt marsh. As the storm water filters through the soil, it is mostly absorbed by the plants while they take up nitrogen and phosphorus as well.

A view of the finished product

A view of the finished product

So next time you park in the trailhead parking lot at Hammonasset Park, be sure to take note of the beauty and the science of the rain garden.

If you want more information about rain gardens, here is a link to a great app click here. And this is a link to a brochure with guidance and plant lists click here