Trailhead location: Ballard Park at the former Norwich Pool site parking lot
Reward: Many views of the Charles Brown Brook, which was badly flooded by Tropical Storm Irene in August 2011. Enjoy the “Stairway to Heaven”, installed by the Norwich Trails Committee and Upper Valley Trails Alliance. Pass the site of the former town reservoir. Hike to the Schoolhouse Road and see the temporary bridge that replaced the one that collapsed.
Length: 3.1 miles round trip with 200 feet of uphill. Those wishing to walk one way, may pre-arrange to drop their car off at Parcel 5.
Difficulty: Mostly easy with a few steep pitches. Suitable for healthy adults and children.
Directions to trailhead from Dan & Whit’s: Follow Beaver Meadow Road (left past the Norwich Inn) 1.1 miles, just past 319 Beaver Meadow Road on the left, and look for the driveway on the left into the former site of the Norwich Pool, just before the bridge crossing the brook.
Prizes: A small prize will go to the youngest attendee of the Marion Cross School and to the oldest Social Security recipient.
Sign up: To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Put “Lower Ballard hike” in header of your email and state the number of participants in your party. Hikes are limited to a maximum of ten participants in total, plus leaders.