Beartown State Forest
Beartown State Forest has two distinctly different worlds between the summer and winter. During the warm months the pristine 35-acre Benedict Pond attracts swimmers, boaters and fishermen. An extensive network of trails on over 12,000 acres offers visitors a chance to glimpse deer, bear, bobcat, fisher and other wildlife, including the park's namesake, the Black Bear. Brooks, beaver ponds, rich deciduous forest, flowering shrubs and wildflowers and fall foliage are plentiful. The Appalachian Trail passes near Benedict Pond and offers spectacular wooded views.
The other half of the year the forest becomes a winter wonderland, where visitors on cross-country skis, snowshoes or snowmobiles can explore a snow-covered wilderness. The 1.5 mile Benedict Pond Loop Trail is a must in any season. Year-round camping is also available.
This is hands down the best place to camp around. I especially love the tent only sites on the water. Facilities are pristine and DCR Staff are always around if you need anything but are also respectful of your privacy. This is a quiet, family oriented state park, so if you plan on boozing with your buddies, lighting a bonfire as tall as the trees and partying until first light... Go somewhere else. This is not that kind of place.
Don't let the name Benedict "Pond" have a negative impact. The pond is by definition only and is larger than many lakes. This is one of the most scenic spots in South County, and the hike around the pond is great fun and flat, though many exposed roots in some spots.
We came here during an event hosted by the local Appalachian trail community. They had tons of grilled food, the people were friendly, and the staff was extremely helpful- even gave us some free leftover firewood from the event. There are some beautiful sites right on the pond, and the trail around the pond is just over a mile, plus there's a journal you can write in on the lake trail. We didn't get a chance to hit any hiking trails, but maybe next time.
Meagan Haar Dodes
Had fun here fishing, even though I didn't catch anything! Gorgeous lake!
Beautiful, well maintained and some nice hiking trails. One trail that we hiked was the Beebe trail. Clean facilities and just a wonderful place to hike and enjoy nature and the outdoors in general.