Haley Farm State Park

This sign marks the start of the popular bike trail at Haley Farm State Park in Groton.
This sign marks the start of the popular bike trail at Haley Farm State Park in Groton. Jenna Cho/The Day

Haley Farm State Park

Town: Groton

Directions: Take I-95 to Exit 88. Head south onto Route 117/Newtown Road, then take a left onto Route 1/Fort Hill Road. After about 3/4 of a mile, keep right onto Route 215/Groton Long Point Road. Take a right onto Brook Street, then another right onto Haley Farm Lane.

Where to Park: About 15 spots are available at the entrance to the farm, off Haley Farm Lane.

Description: This 267-acre park is popular among bicyclists and dog walkers alike. Bicyclists can take advantage of both the 0.8-mile bike trail on the property or take the bridge over the railroad tracks to get to Bluff Point State Park.

Hikers will find an open grassy area by the parking lot where the old farm buildings once stood. A handful of trails branch off from this area; they're unmarked but easy to follow.

Haley Farm is known for its numerous stone walls, which according to the state Department of Environmental Protection, were built by past owner and farmer Caleb Haley.

Take a left at the entrance to the trails and walk by the small pond to get to pleasant views of Palmer Cove and the houses that dot the water.

Regulations: Dogs must be on leash; closes at dusk.

Amenities: One composting toilet at the parking lot; bags available at the entrance as a reminder to pick up after your dogs; bike trail is wheelchair accessible.

Natural Features: Palmer Cove

Fees: Free.

Things to note: Connecticut's first governor, John Winthrop Jr., owned part of Haley Farm in 1648. Haley Farm was almost lost to development until the Groton Open Space Association managed to raise enough funds to have it sold to the state as open space in 1970.

Owned by: State Department of Environmental Protection

More information: http://www.ct.gov/dep/cwp/view.asp?a=2716&q=325208&depNav_GID=1650

http://www.gosaonline.org/haleyhistory.html

Entrance to Haley Farm State Park in Groton. Dozens of old stone walls decorate Haley Farm.
Entrance to Haley Farm State Park in Groton. Dozens of old stone walls decorate Haley Farm. Jenna Cho/The Day
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike.
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike. Jenna Cho/The Day
Remnants of old farm buildings at Haley Farm State Park in Groton.
Remnants of old farm buildings at Haley Farm State Park in Groton. Jenna Cho/The Day
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike.
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike. Jenna Cho/The Day
Elaborate walls made out of old tree limbs create a makeshift room in the woods at Haley Farm State Park in Groton.
Elaborate walls made out of old tree limbs create a makeshift room in the woods at Haley Farm State Park in Groton. Jenna Cho/The Day
Haley Farm State Park in Groton connects to trails at Bluff Point State Park via this bridge.
Haley Farm State Park in Groton connects to trails at Bluff Point State Park via this bridge. Jenna Cho/The Day
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike.
Haley Farm State Park in Groton is a popular spot for bicyclists and dog owners alike. Jenna Cho/The Day
Haley Farm State Park in Groton boats scenic views of Palmer Cove.
Haley Farm State Park in Groton boats scenic views of Palmer Cove. Jenna Cho/The Day

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