You Heard It Here First…
This past year Maine Coast Heritage Trust (MCHT) protected 7.53 miles of shorefront and seven coastal islands with the help of thousands of generous donors. There’s still work to do, trails to build, signs to put up, etc., but we want to make sure these amazing places—just a few of our favorites protected in 2016—are on your radar.
High Island, St. George
High is lovely, edged in quartz-veined rocks, its trails lined with ripe raspberries in August. Plus it’s fairly easy to get to, just a half mile from shore. Have you been?
One of the things we love best about High Island is how much its conservation means to the community of St. George. The community held a parade to help raise funds toward the purchase, and since the spring of 2016 neighbors have been working with MCHT steward Amanda Devine on trail-building and site improvements to make it an even better destination for locals and visitors alike.
Old Pond, Hancock
There aren’t a lot of wild places left along the coast of Maine. Where they remain, MCHT often played a role. Old Pond is one of those increasingly rare places where nature still rules, and this year we made progress in keeping it forever safe from over-development and open for exploration.
One of the things we love about the Old Pond area is how you can park just off of Route One, walk for a few minutes, and find yourself in a place that feels truly remote. If you haven’t experienced the three-mile Old Pond Railway Trail MCHT partnered with Crabtree Neck Land Trust to protect, we suggest you check it out. Here’s some info on Maine Trail Finder. Or visit the Crabtree Neck Land Trust website.
Ram Island, Machiasport
If you’d like to run your imagination wild, locate Ram Island on a map. This place is as barren and beautiful as you’d expect. And you’ll actually find sheep here, and quite possibly a shepherd.
Now Ram Island is permanently protected and will remain open to the public (warning: experienced boat handlers only). If you’d rather not venture so far out, we suggest checking out Hickey Island, also protected by MCHT, which has a similar topography.
More Stories from the Coast
Saving Maine Marshes
Over the past six years, Maine Coast Heritage Trust has worked with partners to complete 36 marsh protection projects from York to Washington counties, conserving a total of about 1,800 acres of marsh and upland buffers.
Cherished Land Becomes an Open Classroom
MCHT collaborates with The Community School to protect important habitat and create permanent outdoor education space on Mount Desert Island.
Why Rivers Matter in a Changing Climate
Protecting connected habitats is key to making the coast more resilient to climate change, and healthy, free-flowing rivers are among the most important types of connected habitats.
Creating Common Ground
MCHT helped conserve a few downtown acres in Milbridge in 2017. Four years later, this land has been transformed into the Milbridge Commons Wellness Park—a place where people can walk by the water, play, and pick free produce.
Sheep Island Stays Open
With the conservation of Sheep Island, MCHT offers a trio of great island preserves in Owls Head.