Kent Falls State Park is a state park in the town of Easton, Connecticut. The park’s namesake, Kent Falls, drops over a cliff face of more than 400 feet (120m) into Long Island Sound. It stands at the eastern end of Kent Falls Avenue, which runs for approximately one mile along the base of the falls. The park includes 1,500 acres (610ha), and is managed by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
The park also features tennis courts, softball fields, soccer fields, and volleyball courts. The park’s campground contains 60 campsites divided into tent or trailer sites. Half are available on a first come, first served basis, while others must be reserved. The campground has hot showers, flush toilets and a sanitary dumping station. Toilets and showers are accessible by way of a ramp. Camping season begins with trout season in April and ends at the conclusion of deer season in December. The park’s nature center offers natural history exhibits and programs throughout the year.
In 1649, English colonists saw no reason to build a water-powered mill on the site of what is now Kent Falls State Park; they named it Mount Hope Plantation after their former home in England. Records show that by 1750, nearly 40 mills were located there. By 1875, only two remained, both abandoned. In 1900, William Winslow Kent, an industrialist who made his fortune in textile machinery, bought the property as a summer estate. He built a small house near the falls, where he could take refuge from the heat during summers spent living mostly in New York City.
After his death, the property changed hands three times before being purchased by the state in 1962. Kent Falls was designated a state park with recreational facilities in 1965, and has since been expanded to include camping sites and a picnic area. A popular trail descends to the bottom of the falls, but swimming under the waterfall is hazardous because of the possibility of rockslides.
The park offer activities such as:
- cross-country skiing
- boat tours