Distance: 2.4 miles
Skill Level: easy, good for little walkers
Elevation Gain: 150′
Type of Hike: lollipop
Trail Condition: trail, muddy stream crossings
Wow Factor: ridiculously large trees
How to get there: From Route 6, head north on 52. Make the first right on Fair St. Go past Carmel High and down the hill. You’ll see a flashing speed sign–the parking lot is right next to it on the right and is easy to miss. It fits about 3 cars unless you park each other in.
Summary: From the parking lot, head down the trail in between marsh reeds. After a few minutes, the trail will head left and come to a fork. The official path heads right, closer to the marsh but an unmarked trail veers left. The two trail will come together.
Keep heading east on green. The path will curve around to the right and cross a little stone bridge. Start working your way uphill.
At marker 4, the green trail will head left uphill. Yellow will be straight/right. They will come back together in a quarter of a mile. Yellow is easier if you just want to do that but there is an interesting railroad abutment up top on the green. Keep heading south on green.
You’ll see the reddish-orange Turtle Trail to the right. Follow it a short distance to the next turtle trail marker that begins the loop. I like to head left up the short and steep hill instead of trying to go down it. Follow the turtle trail as it swings around to the right. Look for the bikepath toward the left.
Before you complete the turtle loop, you will see yellow markers for the Duck Trail to the left. There is no large wooden sign marking the start (as of 2/2016). Take yellow left a short distance to the pond. There are picnic tables under a pavilion and this is a great spot for a break as it’s half way. When you’re done, complete the yellow duck trail.
Turn right on the orange turtle trail to complete the loop. Follow it to the green path.
If you want to do a quick out-and-back, take the brown Squirrel Trail on the right.
Follow the green path back north uphill.
At the fork, take the yellow trail on the left/straight.
Continue straight on green and follow it back to the parking lot.
Dogs: on a leash
Map but check for an updated on in the box on the kiosk. The yellow race track has no trail. There is a tiny yellow cut across starting at marker 4 on the green trail. The duck trail is blue on the map but yellow in real life.