- Park in designated lots only.
Parking for College Woods is available
on Orange, Cold Spring and Livingston Streets.
Motor vehicles are not
allowed in College Woods.
- Trails are for pedestrian use only. No Mountain Bikes or Motorcycles are permitted.
- Dogs must be on leash at all times. Owners are responsible for removal of their animal's solid waste.
- Speed limit is 25 mph unless posted at a lesser speed.
- Ground fires are prohibited throughout the park.
- Charcoal fires are permitted in designated areas only.
- Swimming in Mill River is prohibited.
- Rock Climbing is prohibited.
- Do not harm or collect plants or animals.
- All weapons are prohibited.
- Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
- Park is closed sunset to sunrise unless posted otherwise.
- Please help keep our park clean. Put all trash in the provided barrels.
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Take Willow Street Exit (Exit 6) to end of ramp. Turn right onto Willow Street. At second light turn right on Mitchell Drive. Follow Mitchell Drive to first traffic light. East Rock Park will be in front of you on your right. There are no parking lots at this end of the park, so parking is limited to the street. Please observe the street cleaning signs for parking restrictions.
|From Wilbur Cross Parkway:
Take Whitney Avenue Exit (Exit 61) and head towards New Haven. After passing the reservoir on your left, continue approximately one mile to the flashing yellow light at Cold Spring Street. Turn left onto Cold Spring Street. The College Woods section of East Rock Park is located a quarter mile ahead on your left. The Trowbridge Environmental Center is located on the corner of Cold Spring and Orange Streets, across from Wilbur Cross High School. There are no parking lots at this end of the park, so parking is limited to the street. Please observe the street cleaning signs for parking restrictions.
|From Downtown New Haven:
Take Church Street north towards Hamden. Church Street changes name to Whitney Avenue. Turn right onto Cold Spring Street at the blinking yellow light. In 2-1/2 blocks, the East Rock Ranger Station is on the left. Park on street. The College Woods section of East Rock Park is located a quarter mile ahead on your left. The Trowbridge Environmental Center is located on the corner of Cold Spring and Orange Streets, across from Wilbur Cross High School. There are no parking lots at this end of the park, so parking is limited to the street. Please observe the street cleaning signs for parking restrictions.
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Click on Map for Printable PDF Version
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Park can be reached by taking, any bus that travels on State Street, Orange Street or Whitney Avenue.
The 425-acre park is located on the New Haven / Hamden border.
The park is roughly bounded by Livingston Street, Davis
Street, State Street and the Mill River. It is administered by
the New Haven Department of Parks, Recreation and Trees.
- Directions to Summit
Entering East Rock Park from Davis Street, take the first left
turn onto the Summit Drive. From the end of Orange Street, turn
left onto Farnham Drive. Follow to first right. This is Summit Drive.
- Handicapped Parking
A limited number of stalls are provided at all parking areas.
Vehicles MUST display a parking permit.
- Park Hours and Traffic
The Park is closed sunset to sunrise. The lower drives are open
- Emergency or Violation Reports
In case of fire, police, or medical emergency
call 911 (free) from pay phones at the corner of Cold Spring and
Orange Streets, or at Blake Field
(intersection of Mitchell Drive and Willow Street). To report Park
violations the Ranger Station at 946-6086.
City police regularly patrol the Park for your safety.
Porta-jons are located seasonally at College Woods, the Summit and Rice Field. Restrooms at the Ranger Station at College Woods are available for permitted events.
- Drinking Water
At College Woods Ranger Station, Wilbur Cross Sports Complex,
and Blake Field from April 15 to October 30.
- Urban Park Rangers
A Division of the New Haven Department of Parks, Recreation and
Trees. The Ranger Station Trowbridge Environmental Center is
located in the College Woods area of the Park at the
corner of Cold Spring and Orange streets across from Wilbur Cross High School.
Reservations for Ranger programs and park tours can be made
by schools, groups and organizations. For up-to-date program
information call 946-6086 or visit the program calendar.
- Lost and Found
Contact Park Security or Ranger Station. If no answer, call the
Parks Department Main office at 946-8020
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East Rock was formed about 200 million years ago as the continents were
in the process of moving away from each other. Molten rock from deep
in the earth surged through stress cracks formed in the sandstone bedrock
of the New Haven area. The molten rock cooled to form dolerite, also
know as basalt or traprock. Dolerite is much more resistant to erosion
than the surrounding sandstone. As glacial action and the forces of weathering
eroded away the softer sandstone, East Rock (and other traprock ridges
such as West Rock) became more prominent. The summit of East Rock Park
now rises more than 350 feet above the floor of the Mill River valley
at its base.
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College Woods Pavilion
- Ball Fields: Rice and Blake fields.
Permit required for use; call 946-8022 or 946-6559.
- Basketball Courts: One court in
College Woods and two at Wi!bur Cross High School, and a half court
across from Rice Field.
- Bicycles: Bicycles are allowed on all paved roads. Trowbridge and
English drives are closed to traffic and offer a scenic and peaceful
way to the
summit. Mountain bikes are prohibited on trails.
- Boating: Canoes and rowboats are
permitted on the Mill River, but there are limited launching facilities.
The best access to the river is at
the Orange Street Canoe Launch located on the southwest side of
the Orange Street Bridge. Life jackets are required for your safety.
clear of the tidal gate downstream of the canoe launch site. A printed
guide to the Mill River is available at the East Rock Ranger Station/Trowbridge
- Fishing and Crabbing: Fishing
is permitted all year. Please observe all State Regulations as to limits
and size of catches. A fishing license is required for all individuals
16 years of age and older when fishing north of State Street. Crabbing
is best during July, August and September. All crabs must be 5 inches
from shell point to shell point. Please carry out all trash and monofilament
- Football and Soccer: Rice and Wilbur Cross High School fields.
- Ice Skating: Ralph Walker is at
1080 State Street. Open November through March. Call 946-8029 for rental
and schedule information. For additional
information call 946-8007.
- Joggers/Walkers/Hikers/Cross-Country Skiers: There
are over 10 miles of trails for your enjoyment. Special maps are available at the Ranger
Station. In addition there is a 1/4-mile athletic track at Wilbur Cross High School.
- Kite Flying: Good sites for this
activity are at College Woods, North Meadow, Rice Field and at the
- Picnicking: There are two picnic
pavilions at East Rock Park; one at the summit (English Shelter), and
one in College Woods next to the Trowbridge Environmental Center (Picnic
Pavilion). These facilities may be reserved by calling 946-8020 for
a permit. Picnic tables and charcoal grills are located through College
Woods and atop the summit of East Rock. These can be reserved as well.
If not reserved, these ar available on a first come/first served basis.
Please dispose of all trash properly.
- Playgrounds: Fenced-in playgrounds
for small children are located in College Woods and near the Cedar
neighborhood at the south end of Rice Field.
Cedar playground features a spray pool.
- Self-Guided Nature Trail: A
self-guided nature trail (800 feet long) starts at the northwest
end of the Orange Street Bridge. Constructed
and maintained with the help of Wilbur Cross High School students,
this trail offers an opportunity to explore the natural history of
the Mill River floodplain. Trail-guide pamphlets are available at the Ranger Station.
- Sledding: A favorite spot to sled
is North Meadow located off of Davis Street at the northern end of
the Park. Nearby Edgerton Park features an excellent sledding hill
for young children.
- Swimming: Wilbur Cross High School
pool is free and open to the public during the summer months. For information
on times of operation call
946-8020. Swimming is NOT ALLOWED in the Mill River.
- Tennis: Eight hard-surface courts
are at Wilbur Cross High School Sports Complex. These courts are free
and open to the public. Courts are illuminated
at night during the summer.
- Special Events In The Park: East
Rock Park hosts special events for the public. For details contact
the Ranger Station or the Recreation
Department at 946-8020. ATTENTION ALL VENDORS, PARTIES INVOLVED IN
FUND RAISING, OR OUTSIDE GROUPS CHARGING FEES for services rendered within
the Park property: you are required to contact the New Haven Park's
Director at 946-8027 for written permission to conduct such activities.
- Opportunities: The New Haven Parks
Department encourages people to volunteer in all our parks. To find
out what you can do to make our parks a better
place for all, contact the staff of the Trowbridge Environmental Center
located in East Rock Park.
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- The Summit of East Rock is accessible
by foot, bicycle or car and affords visitors a spectacular view of
downtown New Haven, New Haven Harbor, Long Island Sound, and surrounding
communities. It is a favorite tourist stop in New Haven.
- The Trowbridge Environmental Center,
located in the College Woods section of East Rock Park, is dedicated
to promoting environmental awareness. The center features displays
and information about the flora and fauna of East Rock Park and offers
programs to the general public, school groups and organizations. See
the program calendar for a current list
- Pardee Rose Garden and Greenhouse (203-946-8142)
is located at the intersection of Park Drive and Farm Road. The Rose
Garden, containing an array of flowers from early
spring until mid fall, features one of Connecticut's finest display
of roses. Also found in the garden is a raised, tiered structure that resembles
the top of a wedding cake. Traditionally, many brides and grooms come
here for wedding pictures. Please call 946-8020 for a Park permit if
you are considering a photo shoot or wedding at this site.
- Soldiers & Sailors Monument near the summit honors New Haven men
who gave their lives in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican
War, and the Civil War. Erected in 1887, this 112-foot-high tower can
be seen from almost anywhere in the City. Further information on the
Park's history is at the Ranger Station.
- Giant Steps Trail provides a spectacular
285-foot climb to the Summit. It starts at the English Drive gate along
the north side of Rice Field. The Giant Steps Trail is designated with
red triangle trail markers.
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- Edgerton Gardens is at the corner of Cliff Street Whitney Avenue. This
27-acre park offers the beauty of an old English estate. Flower gardens,
magnificent trees, a fountain, greenhouses, and a Tropical Rainforest
Conservatory can be found here. Hours for the Conservatory are weekdays
year around, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Sundays, 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. A Horticultural
Library and Book Collection can be seen in the Carriage House open Sundays, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
- Eli Whitney Museum is at 915 Whitney
Avenue next to the Whitney Lake Dam. For information on hours and current
exhibits call 777-1833.
- Peabody Museum of Natural History is
at 170 Whitney Avenue. For information call 432-5050.
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The Friends of East Rock Park is a support organization
founded in 1982 to enhance public use and awareness of the Park by sponsoring ranger
programs and fostering community involvement. F.E.R.P. raised the
money for the equipment in the College Woods playground and helps the
staff of the Trowbridge Environmental Center directly in such activities
as trail clearing and park clean-ups.
Friends of East Rock Park is a community and environmental advocacy
group. We encourage neighbors to meet each other, celebrate the
environment and become stewards of the park. We build connections by
hosting social events and work days, and supporting other neighborhood
efforts. All of our events are free and open to everyone.
To join: Friends of East Rock Park - www.friendsofeastrockpark.org.
For more information contact: David Shimchick - (203) 997-3430 / Betty Thompson - (203) 785-9331
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