BRUNSWICK — Woodward Cove, a property the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust purchased two years ago to preserve mud-flat access for wormers and clammers, has a new walking trail.
The new trail runs through the organization’s property on Gurnet Road.
Stewards from both BTLT and the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust were responsible for creating the new path and cut the winding, lollipop-shaped route. It is just under a half-mile long and gives hikers views of hills and apple trees.
Margaret Gerber, stewardship manager for BTLT, said the trail was completed at the end of July, and is open, but her organization will not likely have a formal opening celebration for the property at this time because it does not yet have signs or a kiosk.
Gerber said in addition to giving visitors views of local scenery, the new path will also maintain a space for fishermen to work.
BTLT purchased the 18-acre Woodward Cove property from the Brunswick Unitarian Universalist Church for conservation and public access in 2016. It protects roughly 1,500 feet of undeveloped forested shoreline adjacent to an salt marsh.
According to the organization, although the church allowed clammers free access before the sale, fishermen who use the area could have been in jeopardy of losing that access once the land was sold.
Gerber said establishing the trail was “part of the vision” for the property since her organization purchased it two years ago.
A parking area is off Gurnet Road/Route 24. The trail begins directly from the parking area and hikers can follow trail blazes that mark trees along the way.
BTLT is also involved in a separate, ongoing effort with Maine Coast Heritage Trust to acquire more than 80 acres of shorefront at nearby Woodward Point.
This spring, the land trusts raised $1.62 million of the $3.5 million necessary to buy and conserve the property.
Their deadline is April 2019, and although Maine Coast Heritage Trust will own the land, BTLT will assist in the area’s stewardship and preservation.
The land trust has also conserved 56 other properties totaling more than 2,700 acres, and Gerber said it cares for and maintains more than 17 miles of trails throughout Brunswick, Topsham and Bowdoin. With the addition of new trails, she said the total might now be closer to 20 miles.
“An important part of why we purchased Woodward Cove is to conserve mud flats for (clammers and wormers),” she said. “But we also wanted it to be something for other people as well to enjoy a nice hike.”
A new trail built by the Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust at Woodward Cove in Brunswick gives visitors views of the waterfront property bought from a local church for preservation in 2016.