The Story of the Yawgoog Trails


Section 2: The Early Names of the Trails

Early Names of the Red Trail

The Eagle Trail, probably named after the high cliff called Eagle's Roost, starts at Campsite Donald C. Dewing. It turns to the left (south), following the shore of Wincheck Pond, and ends at the cliffs of Eagle's Roost.

Rustlers' Trail starts at Eagle's Roost and ends at Rustlers' Hideout. The rough, rocky countryside reminded Chief Williams of the cattle rustlers of the old West.

Starting at Cooning Orchard and heading south, the George Utter Trail meets with the Red Trail (Rustler's Trail) near Rustlers' Hideout. Turning east (left) at North Road (also called Hopkinton-Rockville Road, Long Bridge Road, Old Rockville Road, Rockville Road, and West Rockville Road), the trail ends at the parking lot in the Long and Ell ponds region. The Utter Trail is also known as the Lost Road because it used to be a lumbering road that linked Cooning Orchard to North Road. The trail is named in honor of George Benjamin Utter; he was Editor of The Westerly Sun and an original developer of the Appalachian Mountain Club's trail network in South County, Rhode Island. The AMC, too, has dedicated a trail to him -- the Ben Utter Trail -- northwest of Tippecansett Pond in West Greenwich. Utter also helped to organize Rhode Island Camps, Inc. (Beach Pond Camps) for underprivileged children.

The Rim Trail starts where the main Red Trail splits from the AMC Narragansett Trail after leaving Cedar Swamp; the Rim Trail ends at the Sawdust Pile, along the former location of part of the Green Trail. This rough, rocky trail gets its name from the fact that it demarcates the southwestern rim of Camp Yawgoog's property.

Hurd's Trail is the portion of the Red Trail between the Southwest Marker and the Sawdust Pile. Donald W. Hurd was a professor at the Rhode Island School of Design who prepared an early map of the Reservation with some of his students.

Early Names of the Green Trail

The Death Valley Trail begins at the Sawdust Pile and ends where the Green Trail ends, on the Yellow Trail near Hemlock Ledge. This trail passes through Death Valley -- land badly burned by the great fire of 1930.

The Wo-Jack and Wilcox trails are portions of the Green Trail that form two legs of a triangle. The Wo-Jack Trail is dedicated to early Yawgoog leaders Chet Worthington and Eric Jackson. The Wilcox Trail is named after Scouting benefactor Fred B. Wilcox and his son, Howard.

The Symbol Rock Trail is the Green's only side-trail; it is named after the rock that features what are believed to be Native American carvings.

Early Names of the Blue Trail

The portion of the Blue Trail that starts from Camp Yawgoog Road and ends where the AMC Narragansett and Tippecansett trails split has been called the State Line Trail because it traces the Rhode Island/Connecticut border (Williams and Tracy). The Pachaug State Forest is the Connecticut side (west) with the right (east) being Yawgoog in Rhode Island. The trail is part of the Narragansett and Tippecansett trails, which lead to Green Fall Pond and Beach Pond, respectively.

The Freeman Trail begins in Sherwood Forest in Camp Sandy Beach, at a junction with the White Trail, and ends where the Narragansett and Tippecansett trails split. The trail is dedicated to Harry B. Freeman, "former President of the Rhode Island Hospital Trust National Bank who was a Scouting benefactor and who was chairman of a fine survey of Narragansett Council" in the 1960's (Williams and Tracy).


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