Benntts Pond Loop Trail is A quiet hike, accompanied by the sound of your feet and the birds that call the pond home.
The serenity is the perfect setting for reflection just as the pond reflects the blue sky above. However, the trail is poorly maintained and at times poorly marked. Be ready to handle making your way through some thorns and possibly getting your feet wet.
Get Ready: Bennetts Pond Loop Trail is in Ridgefield, CT. It’s located just a few miles from the New York/Connecticut border. Make sure you wear long pants and sleeves in case the trail is not perfectly maintained. This will protect you from thorny bushes and ticks. The trail is 4.4 miles, so be sure to pack a small snack and adequate water.
Get Set: Once you make it to Ridgefield, you’ll take West Lane. Continue on West Lane until you see signs for Main Street. Turn left onto Main. Then turn right on CT-35N/Danbury Road. Last but not least take Great Hill Road to Bennetts Farm Road. You’ll see the parking lot. Pull in, park and head to the board at the beginning of the trail head. Snap a pic and be on your way!
Go: Bennetts Pond Loop Trail starts above the pond and heads down toward the pond pretty quickly. The loop starts here. You’ll walk around the pond, so head right or left, you can’t go wrong. I headed right and was very quickly faced with a dilemma. The trail disappeared!
I read signs that the trail was not maintained very well (more on this later).
At this point, the trail disappeared as it reached a small stream shooting off the pond. I wasn’t expecting to get my feet wet (sometimes you just don’t want to, you know?!) So I found a large log and the dogs and I balance-beamed our way to the other side. Once there, the trail opened up and was easy to follow. It was a clear day and the pond reflected the blue sky beautifully. This trail is beloved by bird watchers and nature lovers and I can see why. Two gorgeous swans inhabit the lake along with many of their smaller fowl friends. The loop stays within view of the water. At some point it becomes very overgrown with thorn bushes. I was wearing quarter-length leggings. It wasn’t pretty but sometimes the unexpected is a challenge and making it through is fun.
Effort: This is a moderate hike. It’s a pretty flat trail with only 465 ft of elevation gain. But, the length and thorn bushes make it tiring. An experienced hiker can expect to finish this baby in a couple hours; a beginner might want to plan for 3 hours on trail.
Takeaway: Bennetts Pond is beautiful and it’s wild and it’s not heavily trafficked. Because of that, the nature is bananas. Sitting in silence by the water you’re sure to see many animals. The wildness comes with its downfalls, though. The trail is poorly maintained and there are a lot of ticks. I’ll do this hike again, but I definitely won’t be bringing the pups.