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Hidden Valley Upgrades

Creating New Trails

In May 2023, Steep Rock added four parcels—Cook, Mt. Tom, Bantam, and Asrar—totaling 206 acres to our Hidden Valley Preserve. As seen on the map below, the Cook Parcel extends the boundary of Hidden Valley Preserve another 0.75 miles north along the Shepaug River and is adjacent to Steep Rock’s Bronson Fields Pollinator Meadow. The Mt. Tom, Bantam, and Asar parcels are located between Mt. Tom State Park and Rumsey School, hugging both the Shepaug and Bantam Rivers.

Recreational Trail System:  Steep Rock is now working to establish recreational trails in these parcels that will offer new opportunities for hikers to enjoy the year-round beauty and splendor of the natural world. Once complete, you will be able to casually stroll along the historic Shepaug River and Railroad bed or explore the rocky outcroppings and upland core forests in the Bantam, Mount Tom, and Asrar Parcels.

How You Can Help Make This Happen:  Trail construction costs average between $50,000-65,000 per mile depending on terrain, access, labor, materials, and other expenses. Our budget for the entire Hidden Valley Trail Expansion is $95,000.

Total Project Budget
Raised So Far 29%

River and Rail Trail (Cook Preserve) This parcel abuts Hidden Valley Preserve to the north and is open to the public. The trail follows the Shepaug railroad bed from the former bar gate upriver another 0.7 miles. The trail has been cleared and drainage improved (see photo), making the trail easily accessible to hikers, cyclists, and equestrians. In 2024-2025, we will be adding the 0.5-mile Bronson connector trail to the Bronson Field Pollinator Meadow Loop.

Cook Parcel Trail System (Budget: $30,000)
Completed:  Parking, kiosk, and parcel signage at main entrance to Hidden Valley. River and Rail Trail (blue triangle blaze) to the new northern boundary:  
2024: Planning and design for 0.5-mile Bronson connector trail (Fall)

2025: Initiate construction of connector trail (Spring)

Stone Wall Loop and Knollside Trail

Stone Wall Loop and Knollside Trail Staff and Trustees have also designed a 2-mile double-loop trail connecting Mt. Tom and Bantam Preserves (see photo). During the Spring 2024, the kiosk and parking area will be installed on Mt. Tom Road. Our goal is to complete the loop trail by mid-Summer 2024. From this trail, future extensions are planned.

Mt. Tom, Bantam, and Asrar Trail System (Budget: $65,000)
2024:  Planning and design of initial trails connecting the three parcels (Winter).  Parking, kiosk, and signage installation at trailhead on Mt. Tom Road (Spring).  Construct Stone Wall Loop and Knollside Trail connecting these parcels (Summer)

2025:    Planning for additional connector trails

Matching Gifts

 Did you know many companies match donations made by employees, employees’ spouses, and retirees, allowing employees to DOUBLE their generosity and impact? 

Contact your employer today to see if they will match your gift.


 If you are 70½ years of age or older, you can take advantage of a popular gift option called a qualified charitable distribution (QCD) also known as a IRA charitable rollover.  QCDs offer simple ways to benefit Steep Rock and receive tax benefits in return.

To learn more, visit here.

Stock or Wire

If you’d like to give a gift via wire or stock, please reach out to for our account information.


You can donate through your donor advised fund in just three clocks on our website
When granting through your donor-advised fund, please use the following information:

Our legal name: Steep Rock Association, Inc.
Tax ID: #06-6069060
Mailing address: PO Box 279, Washington Depot, CT 06794

Check Donations

Please make checks payable to Steep Rock Association. Our mailing address is:

Steep Rock Association
PO Box 279
Washington Depot, CT 06794