The 15,300 acres of Centennial Watershed State Forest offer diverse opportunities for hiking, fishing, cross-country skiing, snowshoeing and birding.
In 2002, the State, in partnership with The Nature Conservancy (TNC), acquired ownership from Aquarion Water Company of roughly 6,000 acres and also the conservation and public access easements on an additional 9,000 acres. The name “Centennial Watershed” was chosen to honor the 100-year anniversary of Connecticut's State Forest System and to recognize that one of the main purposes of the land is to protect drinking water supplies. About 90% of the land is in Fairfield County, with the rest in Litchfield, New Haven, and Hartford Counties. Management of this Forest is through the Conservation Land Committee (CLC) consisting of representatives of Aquarion Water Company, DEEP, and TNC.
To be on Centennial Watershed State Forest, you must have a valid permit. A hiking permit allows access to 17 miles of scenic trails. A fishing permit provides access to freshwater fishing at Saugatuck, West Pequonnock and Far Mill reservoirs in Weston, Redding, Monroe and Shelton. A hunting permit provides access to archery and shotgun deer hunting.
Hiking, Snowshoeing, Cross-Country Skiing: Trail maps/permits are available at kiosks located at the trailheads, at the Aquarion Water Company office at 714 Black Rock Road (Route 58) Easton.
The Trail Map serves as your permit and must be carried at all times.
Hikers under the age of 14 must be accompanied by an adult permit-holder.
Swimming, wading, camping, alcoholic beverages, smoking, campfires, picnicking, littering, radios, motors and vendors are prohibited.
The Saugatuck Universal Access Trail located at the northern end of the Saugatuck Reservoir on Newtown Road in Redding is wheelchair accessible.
Pets are prohibited.
No motorized vehicles, bicycles or mountain bikes are allowed.
Horseback riding is not allowed.
Fishing: Anglers need a fishing permit from the Aquarion Water Company valid only for the year in which it is issued. A current Connecticut fishing license is also required. Fishing permits are not transferable. Season permit fees are $25.00, one-day permits are $5.00, and permits for senior citizens and physically challenged anglers are free
Hunting: All hunting must follow state regulations as found in the CT Hunting and Trapping Guide.