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Connecticut State Parks

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USA Parks
Greater New Haven Region
West Peak State Park
West Peak State Park Lookout II © Gary Jordan
A vantage point to view the surrounding area.
West Peak State Park Lookout I © Gary Jordan
This is one of the many lookouts that can be viewed as you hike along the cliff ledge.
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West Peak State Park is a natural haven offering breathtaking views from atop the Hanging Hills. Known for its rugged terrain and hiking trails, it's home to Castle Craig Tower - an iconic stone observation tower providing panoramic vistas of Meriden and beyond. The park also features diverse wildlife species making it ideal for nature enthusiasts. Its serene environment makes this place perfect for picnicking or simply enjoying some quiet time amidst greenery.

History of the Area
Located in Meriden, Connecticut, the park was established in 1915. It's part of the larger Hanging Hills range. The area is known for its unique geological features and diverse wildlife species.

The highest point within city limits at over 1,000 feet above sea level is found here - Castle Craig Tower. This stone observation tower built by Walter Hubbard provides panoramic views across Long Island Sound to New Haven.

In addition to hiking trails that lead up West Peak itself or around Crescent Lake below it; there are picnic areas available too making this a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts year-round.

Over time conservation efforts have been implemented ensuring protection of natural resources while maintaining recreational opportunities such as bird watching and nature photography among others.

Connecticut has made state parks, forests, trails, historic sites and beaches more accessible to our residents so they can enjoy the many attractions and beauty they offer. Under the Passport to the Parks program, parking fees are now eliminated at Connecticut State Parks for those with Connecticut registered vehicles. You can view the CONNECTICUT PASSPORT TO THE PARKS web page to learn more.

- Blue Trail: A challenging 6.7-mile loop trail that features beautiful wildflowers, primarily used for hiking and nature trips.

- Metacomet-Monadnock Trail: An extensive 114-mile long-distance footpath through the West Peak State Park section; offers scenic views of Connecticut's landscape.

- Castle Craig Loop via White & Red Trails: This is a moderate difficulty level hike spanning approximately five miles with an elevation gain of about 1,000 feet featuring stunning vistas from atop Castle Craig Tower.

- Merimere Reservoir Out-and-back Hike on Mattabesett (Blue) Trail: Approximately four miles in length round trip offering panoramic views over Mirror Lake and Hubbard Park below it.

- East-West Traverse along Metacomet Ridge - South to North Section : Roughly nine mile-long trek across varied terrain including ridges, forests and meadows providing excellent bird-watching opportunities.

-South Mountain Loop via Orange Blaze Mainline Trial : Moderate-level three mile circular route taking hikers around the southern part of park's mountain range showcasing diverse flora fauna found within this region

-Hang Glider Viewpoint Spur off M-M/ New England National Scenic Tail - Short but steep half-a-mile spur leading up to viewpoint popular among hang gliders due its high vantage point overlooking surrounding areas

-Crescent Lake Side Pathway- Easy two-miles stroll suitable for all skill levels skirting edge Crescent lake ideal picnics or leisure walks amidst serene natural surroundings

-Northwest Quadrant Circuit Via Yellow Blazes Connector Route - Five Mile circuitous path exploring northwestern quadrant state park passing by several points interest such as old quarries remnants historical structures
Things To Do in the Area
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Explore the Connecticut River aboard the R/V River Quest, an environmentally friendly 64', 60 passenger vessel docked at Eagle Landing State Park, Haddam, CT.
16.9 miles from park*

Visitor Comments, Memories and Reviews
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Area Campgrounds
Lake Compounce Campground
185 Enterprise Drive
Bristol, CT
Gentile's Campground
223 Mount Tobe Road Route 262
Plymouth, CT
Nearby Hotels

Directions from Hartford, Connecticut:

- Start on I-84 W.
- Take exit 39A for CT-9 S towards New Britain.
- Merge onto CT -9 S.

Driving through Berlin Turnpike and Chamberlain Highway:

- Continue straight to stay on the Berlin Turnpike/Chamberlain Hwy
- Use any lane to turn slightly right onto Kensington Rd.

Reaching West Peak State Park:

- Drive along Southington Road until you reach Edgewood road where you'll take a left turn.
- Follow this road up into Hubbard park which leads directly into West Peak state park.

From Waterbury, Connecticut:

- Get on I-691 E in Cheshire from Hamilton Ave and Highland Ave
- Follow I-691 E to Meriden-Waterbury Tpke in Southington. Take exit 4 fromI-I91 N

Arriving at your destination:

- From there follow signs leading toward west peak state park or continue driving northward till reaching it

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Connecticut State Parks