In late October, one of my closest friends came to visit. Being my first fall living in New England, and she being the friend I discovered my love for hiking with, I thought we should go on a road trip, hike, and enjoy the fall foliage that New England has to offer. Plus, it seemed like it was the prime time of autumn to do so.
Through my research, I found this killer fall foliage tour through New England. I also learned there was a name for the likes of us: leaf peepers. No shame.
Unfortunately, she wouldn’t be up here for long enough to take the tour suggested. Then, Tobias took up baseball, and with only a family car we were faced with him either missing his last two games or us staying more local. I had read a ton prior about Kent, Litchfield County, and about how this is the area in which the Appalachian trail goes through Connecticut. Sold.
One issue: it was due to rain. A lot. All day. But we’re outdoorsy in a ‘let’s hike and then take a hot shower and sleep in a warm bed’ kind of way, so we were down for the challenge. We had a late start, then headed north on CT’s winding roads and highways, and we eventually found ourselves in Kent.
When I told a neighbor of mine that we were headed that direction, he said, “Litchfield County? That’s what we know here in Connecticut as ‘God’s Country.”
Now, y’all. I’m from The South. With capital letters. We’ve all heard God’s Country is down there, somewhere in the bible belt, right? But, rain or shine, this part of the country–it’s gorgeous, y’all. Just stunning.
We stopped in the town of Kent and grabbed a cup of coffee and some chocolates for the boys back at home. Kent is a really special little town in that they disallow chain businesses to open up in the area. Everything was historical and quaint, my favorite things about New England, but without the broken-up monotony of a CVS or Starbucks or Dunkin’ (though I love Dunkin’ so) thrown in the mix. It’s special. And on that day, very wet. Still, we headed toward Kent Falls State Park for a hike, with hopes of having some time for Bull’s Bridge and The Appalachian Trail.
I left the good camera in the car, and, with hesitation, we went out during the downpour and headed for the falls.
The Park had many terraces built in to get several views of the falls as we hiked alongside.
We got lost in conversation, and maybe ended up getting off the trail, onto a country road. Lost in conversation + lost in the woods = my happy place.
On our way back to the car, the fog finally lifted. For less than a minute before covering those brilliant hills again. C’est la vie!
I managed to forget how early the sun goes down here in the Northeast during the fall, so we made a quick stop at Bull’s Bridge before heading back to Downtown Kent to goof off a bit.
There we found some really great antique shops, where I resisted the urge to buy all the things, before stopping in to The Heron American Craft Gallery where I just couldn’t resist replacing our broken hammock chair we bought in Mexico with an upgrade:
I can’t post about Kent without mentioning the lovely dinner we had at Kingsley Tavern and our stop into The House of Books. I’m a total bibliophile, but this bookstore is really outstanding because the books had brief, heartfelt descriptions written by the employees who reviewed them. It was lovely, personable, and, most of all, well curated. I wanted so many of the books I saw, unlike an average big store where you feel like you need to dig through the mass to “find a good one.”
I took those photos before seeing a sign requesting no photography, and didn’t take anymore after that. Unfortunately, I’ve amassed quite a collection of unread books that I only seem to have discovered through the process of the magic art of tidying up.
I’ll get through that 30 gallon bin of books (yeah, seriously. Whoa.) soon enough, and head back to Kent for Connecticut’s gateway to the AT, some good books, a little antiquing, and a whole lot of quaint.