Hubbard Park in Meriden is home to the popular Daffodil Festival, there's a playground, ducks and geese, even the famous Castle Craig. It's a fantastic place for the whole family. But there is a dark side, and the legend of the Black Dog of West Peak.

The locals know all about the Black Dog of West Peak, however, animal lovers, beware! This is not the kind of dog you can take home. He won't fetch or do tricks, but he can cause you despair and possibly death.

As local legend has it, i you meet the Black Dog once, it shall be for joy; if you meet him twice, it shall be for sorrow; and if you meet him a third time, you will die. Of course, there are numerous tales of those who met their demise after seeing the Black Dog a third time.

Actually, there have been at least six deaths that some people have attributed to seeing the Black Dog three times. According to, the very first account dates back to an article published in the Connecticut Quarterly in 1898.

According to the article, two geologists were there doing research. One of the geologists had only seen the Black Dog once, while the other had already seen the Black Dog twice during previous trips to the mountain. On this day, the Black Dog appeared again on a hill not far away from the two. Shortly after spotting the Dog, one of the rocks let go and the one geologist slipped off the hill and disappeared. The other geologist went to get help, but was too cold to return and help the rescue party.

When the man was found later, a witnesses reported that there was a Black Dog standing over his lifeless body at the bottom of the cliff.

Several years later, the one geologist who survived went back to West Hill again and never returned. His body was found in just about the same spot that his friend was found a few years earlier.

So did he see the Black Dog for a third time? Before he took what would be his last trip to the hill, he had already seen the Black Dog twice, according to the legend.

Now, given the fact that the trails at Hubbard Park can be very hazardous even to an experienced hiker, it's not that big of a shock that someone would fall, even in ideal conditions. But the legend of the Black Dog will always be in question any time anything happens at Hubbard Park.

So if you visit, make sure and bring a camera, because the views are spectacular, but if you happen to see the Black Dog, be afraid, be very, very afraid.

Here's an old Action News Connecticut report on the Legend of the Black Dog:

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