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4. Hike up Prospect Mountain

The entrance trail to Prospect Mountain and Rand's View is across the paved street and to the left of the boat launch and parking area and is marked by two white blazes and a sign that reads "FootPath No Bikes". Follow a gradually ascending narrow footpath into a mixed hardwood forest. Along the way, look for several outstanding glacial erratics which are large independent rocks left behind during the last ice age.

In 5 minutes you will come to a meadow surrounded by several lovely views of the Litchfield Hills. Soon you will follow the blazes back into a mixed hardwood forest and continue a gentle but steady climb up Prospect Mountain for the next 20 minutes. Here, the narrow forest path, wends its way through a colorful forest of oak, birch, elm, hickory, pine and young maple trees.

For the next 5 minutes stroll along an elevated rock ledge that offers good views of the forest just traversed. This section of walk is uneven and will be slippery in inclement weather. Soon you will enter a beautiful hemlock forest that is cool and shady in summer and fall and offers protection in winter and spring. This section of trail is flat and offers gorgeous glimpses of the surrounding Litchfield Hills through the lacey green hemlocks.

Walking along this part of the trail, it is hard to believe that these quiet woods were once a hive of activity. This area, one of many in Litchfield Hills, is where charcoal was made to feed the fires of the regions many blast furnaces in the production of iron ore.

In a short time, you will enter a mixed hardwood forest. Reaching the summit of Prospect Mountain you are rewarded with stunning views of rolling landscapes, Canaan Mountain, and the village of Canaan nestled in a serene valley to the north.