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Hoffman-Matthiessen-DeGerenday Preserve


95 Sill Lane

Parking area for 4-6 cars is set back from the road



Moderate with several steep hills

40 acres


A favorite of many locals looking for a moderate hike in a wooded setting featuring laurel stands, large, soft patches of ferns, and dramatic rock outcroppings. Hikers may be rewarded by encountering beaver, swans, ducks, deer, great blue herons, an occasional osprey, or songbirds.


Three separate trails are well marked in Blue, Red, and Yellow. Follow the different trail markers from the point of divergence until they rejoin the initial trail on the wood road where you started. Each loop takes 45 minutes to over an hour to walk.


The southern tip of the preserve is directly across Mill Brook from our Griswold Preserve and there is a lovely view from atop the rocky point.


Note: A portion of the red trail is closed and rerouted March 10 to June 1 each year for wood duck nesting season. Please obey posted signs to protect the wildlife.



This 40 acre preserve is the result of three generous donations to the Old Lyme Land Trust: 24 acres off Sill Lane donated by John L. Hoffman in 1992 from his parents’ estate, 8 acres on Millpond Lane donated by conservationist Ormsby Hanes Matthiessen in 2001, and another 8 acres on Millpond Lane donated in 2007 by Elisabeth DeGerenday, founder of the Lyme Academy of Fine Arts.


The field-stone and shingle house at the top of hill was designed and built by Harry Hoffman (father of John L.), a noted member of the original Old Lyme art colony.

Feeder stream with skunk cabbage and lichen along red trail.

Hoffman stream.jpg

Ledge at start of trails

Hoffman ledge.jpg
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