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Along Long Island Sound in Marshlands Conservancy
Bring your binoculars and a guide book for a walk through a meadow, through a salt marsh, along the shore of Long Island Sound and return through a forest.
Views, Public Transportation, Birding
Trailhead GPS Coordinates40.955971,-73.703262
From the New England Thruway, take Exit 19, Playland Parkway. Take the first right off the parkway, turn left, and then right at the next intersection. In 0.3 mile, merge with the Boston Post Road. The entrance to Marshlands Conservancy is to the left just past the Rye Country Club (0.5 mile).
Take the Metro-North New Haven Line to the Harrison station. Cross Halstead Avenue and walk down Purdy Street. Turn left onto Park Avenue and, at the end, turn right onto Boston Post Road. The entrance to Marshlands Conservancy is about 200 yards on the left.
Take the trail that begins at the right side of the visitors center (as you face it), cross a small bridge and turn left. The large 1838 Greek revival mansion is the boyhood home of John Jay, first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. The Jay House is being restored by the Jay Heritage Center for use as an educational facility hosting programs in American History, social justice, landscape conservation and environmental stewardship.
Follow the left edge of the meadow and at the far end of the meadow on your left is a side trail to a view of the marshlands and an osprey nest platform. Retrace your steps back to the meadow and then head left downhill and cross through salt marshes out onto a spit, known as Marie's Neck. Take the right fork and circle the end of the spit which has views out over Long Island Sound.
Just before reaching the trail junction to return to the mainland is a fireplace chimney. For those wishing to explore less-used trails, turn right at the chimney and continue towards the shore. Otherwise the return trip is to retrace your route back to the meadow and then take the first trail on the right into the forest. Pass a trail that comes in from the left, and at the next junction, go left to return to the nature center.