Lake Gaillard Walk

Today my mom and I went to the Walk-A-Thon around Lake Gaillard sponsored by the North Branford Women’s Club and the Regional Water Authority.  Today was one of only two days each year that citizens are allowed to visit the lake (the other day is Easter for sunrise service–which I think I went to once, in 8th grade).  There was a shuttle from the elementary school to the entrance, but since there’s an entrance from the end of our road, we just walked.  We couldn’t justify the use of fossil fuels when we could just sneak in…

Here’s where we entered.

Mom, me and a view of the lake.

I wanted to go out to that building but there was a gate with barbed wire.

We stopped at this point to check out a bald eagle nesting through binoculars.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t take a picture.  It was out on the island in the reservior, which my dad said is an 80-acre island.

The 6.5 mile marker.  All together, including walking off the trail and to and from the lake, we walked 9.3 miles.  We both wore pedometers…

The dam.  Lake Gaillard is a man-made reservoir.  My great-grandmother Marion(Harrison) Rose grew up where the lake is now.  All of the farmers living in this valley were forced to move when they decided to make a reservior.  I would guess that was about 100 years ago, but I’m not sure…

Stealing some daffodils off the lawn of one of the water company houses.  Nobody lives there, so I decided to bring them home to enjoy.

I wish we could go to the lake whenever we wanted, because it would be a great walk any time of year.  It’s so peaceful and we also thought it would be a great place to bike ride.  However, this reservior supplies drinking water to much of New Haven County, so it’s off-limits most of the time.



Filed under Outside, Sustainable Living

5 responses to “Lake Gaillard Walk

  1. Kenneth Harrison

    I believe your grandmother Marion Rose who married Stephen J Rose was my fathers cousin as depicted by the abbreviated tree below

    1 – Nathan Harrison : Anna Louise Strickland
    2 – Albert E Harrison and Isabelle R
    3 – Marion R Harrison

    2 -John Rose Harrison and Anna Jackson Harrison
    3 – Donald L Harrison

    My brother and I had just been down that way last year, went through the two cemeteries and saw what must have been Albert’s old farmhouse just at the foot of the Lake Gaillard dam at the end of North road. There was a sign out front naming it the Harrison farm. We assumed it was Albert E Harrison Nathan’s sons house but perhaps not. If we had not run out of time we would have stopped in for a chat.

    I have been researching the family genealogy lately. It would be
    interesting to share notes, photo’s family stories if you had any.
    I may have some pictures of your grandmother and not konw who she is. There is one of a 1950 family reunion that she may be in.
    My siblings and some of our cousins have been discussing making an attempt at reviving the reunion.

    If you have any interest in sharing family history please let me know. Enjoy .. Ken

  2. farmersdaughterct

    Hi Ken- Yes, Marion was my great-grandmother. The tree/maple syrup farm on North Street belongs to Dudley Harrison, who is my grandfather’s cousin. I’m not sure who’s house was the abandoned one at the end of my street, Great Hill Road, but I was just up there the other day picking wineberries. My other Great-grandparents, the Gedneys, lived here on Great Hill Road, and our house is on their property.
    I’ve been interested in geneology of the Rose family for some time, but I hadn’t looked into the Harrisons. All I really know of the Harrisons is what my great-grandmother told me about her parents and siblings. I’d be interested to hear more, especially about when they came to North Branford and where they came from.
    Nice to meet you!

  3. Karen Hubachek


    I am from N. Branford and went to school with Roses, had a Mrs Rose for an assistant Girl Scout leader, bought thread from a Harrison on North Street, and–on a 3rd grade field trip in 1964–watched Harrisons make maple syrup from trees that surround the lake.

    And of course, those pie’s from Rose’s Orchard stand on Rte 139………….

    Thanks for the memories!

  4. My great-great-grandfather Rev. Willliam Bronson Curtiss, lived in the Curtiss Rose in Lake Gaillard before the Water Company purchased and flood the land. I am also a genealogist working on my lines. Curtiss, Stevens, Burns (Bryne). I would like a map of Lake Gaillard before flooding. Thanks

  5. P.S I grew up in North Branford and know the territory as does my cousin Joye (Hall) Rose.

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