UVLT has purchased a conservation easement protecting 50 acres of farmland, wetland and Clay Brook shoreland in Lyme. The land includes a mile of scenic frontage on Route 10, Whipple Hill Road and North Thetford Road and the sites of a historic mill and schoolhouse.
The Connecticut River and its tributaries have been a focus of the Upper Valley Land Trust for many years. In the late 1990s, UVLT led a successful initiative to conserve land along Grant Brook and create a popular trail link from the Lyme Elementary School to the confluence at the River Road bridge. A few years later, we conserved 125 acres and over a mile of Clay Brook frontage north of Pushee Falls.
This newest easement extends conservation upstream along Clay Brook and will add another half mile of conserved stream frontage linking to the Town-owned Chaffee Sanctuary. Most of this property has been used as cropland; there are about 40 acres of farm soils ranked as “statewide important.” The balance of the property is wetland and wetland-associated uplands, ranked as the highest quality in their ecological region by the state Wildlife Action Plan. The easement also protects land above aquifer resources.
The project was supported by major grants from the US Department of Agriculture and the NH Department of Environmental Services, a contribution from the Lyme Conservation Commission and donations from area residents.