Situated between Stonington and Watch Hill is the 1,013 acre Barn Island Wildlife Management Area. This is an off-the-beaten-path location that many of the regional brochures do not even mention. Only a small sign with an arrow on Route 1 marks the way to the entrance. The Connecticut Coastal Access Guide however, refers to this as the state's "premier coastal wildlife management area".
I visited Barn Island last week with the hopes of seeing some fall foliage, but that was not to be. With water temperatures in the upper 60's, and evening air temperatures in the lower 50's and upper 40's, it is still too early to see much change in color along the Sound. The lack of autumn reds though, did little to damper my visit. This is a beautiful spot!
Just north of the boat launch on Palmer Neck Road, I entered an eastward trail leading to an overlook that included numerous interpretive signs. From there, the trail worked it's way down a slope to a causeway that crossed a large tidal marsh. There may have not been much fall foliage, but I could smell October in the air. The decaying cordgrass and other vegetation was all too apparant to my senses. The landscape was mostly green,...but not for long.
Facebook: Fans Of Barn Island
Audubon CT: Barn Island
MysticSeaCaptain: Kayak Barn Island