Squantz Pond State Park, New Fairfield

#23 of 66 in Nature in Connecticut
Squantz Pond State Park is a public recreation area located on the southwestern shore of Squantz Pond, north of Danbury, in the town of New Fairfield, Connecticut. The state park offers opportunities for swimming, fishing, hiking, and boating. The park encompasses that are bordered on the west by 1100acre Pootatuck State Forest.
The state park was established in 1926. The pond and state park are named for Chief Squantz, a leader of the Schaghticoke tribe. Safety concerns, drowningsFrom 1996, when the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection began keeping records on drownings at Connecticut state parks, through 2011, fifteen people drowned at Squantz Pond State Park.
In July 2007, DEP officials made "the Rocks" off limits to beachgoers. In response to the drownings and pressure from local officials, the state announced plans to reduce the parking capacity of the park from about 500 cars to about 250, and to post signs on nearby Interstate 84 announcing if the park has reached capacity. Officials said the reduced capacity would help DEP prevent swimming outside of authorized areas.
On Labor Day 2007, an 18-year-old man from Queens, N.Y., became the third drowning victim of 2007 at about 1 p.m. at East Beach, an area that was not protected by lifeguards because the state DEP believed the drowning danger to be lower than other sections of the park.
In June 2008, DEP unveiled several improvements to the park designed to improve the safety of swimmers. The designated beach swimming area was enlarged and clearly marked to make it more attractive to swimmers, trees were removed to improve the sight lines of on-duty lifeguards, and a dock was installed for a patrol boat.
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Squantz Pond State Park Reviews
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54 reviews
  • I live in New Fairfield and can tell you Squantz Pond is a gem! You must go during the week to really enjoy it though. Proximity to New York makes it a desirable day visit for city dwellers who come o...  more »
  • Laid back pond for sunning, reading and playing close to the water during off hours. Peak hours can be crazy, so get there early! The setting is great for little ones.  more »
  • Fun park to go to when it's dead. I haven't been here during the summer yet, but from what I hear it's a nightmare. I'll definitely check it out, as I live a 30 second drive. But the views are awesome, it's huge and it's clean(at least right now). It's really nice having a park like this so close to home. I just wish there was more parking.
  • Squantz is always fun there's a beach a crapload of pick nick tables and a couple of great trails. Went here all the time in high school and its definitely worth a visit if you're in the area. Try to go on a weekday when its not super busy.

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