Rhode Island's mighty Jerimoth Hill sits on land owned by Brown University on which they have built supports for telescopes and such for astronomical observation. Until 3 months ago (July 2005), however, the access to the spot from Rt 101 was across a very short strip of private land and only Brown University had the legal right to use it.
The owner -- a 70-year-old, flamboyantly-gay music teacher to some of the small children in the neighborhood -- was reputed to have frequently driven off innocent Highpointers at gunpoint. The story is told of a Boy Scout troop and its leaders being forced to lie face down in the dirt for 45 minutes waiting to be arrested for trespassing by the bemused local Ocean State constabulary.
This past July, however, to the delight of Highpointers the world over, the property was sold to Jeff and Debbie Mosley who have an entirely different view of things. With the help of the now-recovered Boy Scouts and the Highpointers Club the Mosley's have built a little stone pathway from the highway to the sainted highpoint of the great state of Rhode Island.
On September 24, 2005 when I showed up, I was met by Jeff Mosley who was fantastically solicitous. The RI highpoint ain't much, but meeting and talking to Jeff Mosley made the trip well worth while.
One of the things Jeff told me was that Rhode Island has a pair of nesting Bald Eagles on a little island or such in the Scituate Reservoir, just off Rt 116. He said that there often were people standing on a platform with telescopes, as well there might be for such a sight, but I drove around the entire reservoir and could see neither hide nor hair of eagles or oglers. The National Wildlife Magazine confirms this phenomenon but gives no information about how to locate the birds. If anyone knows something about this, I'd love to hear from them.
Directions to Jerimoth Hill, RI
Take I-395 in Connecticut to exit 93 (101, Dayville, E. Killingly)
Take Rt 101 East 5.4 miles:
Past/over two little lakes
Ascend Jerimoth Hill
At the top of the hill, on the left, is a sandy pull-off marked with large rocks in front of a large cell/radio tower.
Across the street is the "trailhead", a white stone path marked with a prominent Highpoint sign.
Since it is now accessable on weekends, decided to drive there, and check it out. Sure enough the gate was open. (9am) So I just walked to the end of the path, where there is a small sign in the grass to the right, left by highpointers club. Nobody came out and said anything. Took some pictures, and left.
All I can say, is that the landowners here, are too anal about their property. They threatened to call the state troopers on me and my friends.
Visited this state highpoint when I happened to be travelling in the area anyway.
Hiked circuitous route to avoid the property of a landowner who didn't wish to grant access.
Had a nice little road trip to Jerimoth Hill. Several inches of snow on the ground,
I am the first one to post for the May 30th Open Access Date, which, at that time (4pm), had gotten about 100 visitors. We drove down there after climbing Mt. Washington that morning, and Mt. Greylock on Saturday. Jerimoth Hill is a cute little spot, behind somebody's house, who doesn't like visitors. I have always found the Rhode Islanders I have come in contact with to be hostile. When doing research for work, I had to communicate with Rhode Island government officials, and they always gave me a hard time and were reluctant to help. State officials from other states had always been friendly and happy to help, even when under deadline. Screw you Rhode Island!
An epic winter summit of Jerimoth Hill. Weather was around 20 degrees, the access road from Route 101, to about 50 feet toward the highest point, was very smooth ice.