Walpole Woods

Walpole Woods is a property of the Town of South Bristol. This approximately fifty acre woodlot was a gift of the neighboring Gordon Merriam family to the former Damariscotta Area Recreational Alliance in 1963. Subsequently, ownership was transferred to the Town of South Bristol in 1978. Stewardship of the property was entrusted to the Damariscotta River Association in 2003, which now works in partnership with the town. It was Mr. Merriam’s wish “that trails could be opened up to the public for walks and enjoyment of woodland, springs, mosses, wildlife, etc. In winter the trails could be used for snowshoeing

Marsh River Bog

The Marsh River Bog Preserve is a 54 acre property that DRA purchased in 2004. Managing organizations:   Damariscotta River Association Trail Abstract The Marsh River Bog Preserve features three loop trails and a bog, opening up to exploration a natural community that few visitors ever have a chance to see. Cotton grass, bog orchids, cranberries, and stunted trees cling to a mat of peat moss which forms an ‘island’ in the center of the bog. Numerous individuals, foundations and public funds made the acquisition possible, among them the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, supported by the purchase of special instant lottery

Great Salt Bay Farm & Heritage Center

This 115-acre property is DRA’s headquarters campus, home to our offices, educational programs, and wildlife preserve. One of few intact saltwater farms in the Midcoast, the property was acquired in several pieces starting in 1994 with the help of generous members, neighbors, and donors, including Betty Noyce. LEARN MORE ABOUT GREAT SALT BAY FARM Beyond the trails discussed here, Great Salt Bay Farm offers numerous programs and amenities for visitors. Managing organizations: Damariscotta River Association Trail Abstract: A variety of habitats in close proximity make the Farm a regional birding destination. Other highlights of the property include our nature center, community

Crooked Farm

The Crooked Farm Preserve was established in 2002, as a result of a community partnership among Crook family, the Carpenter’s Boat Shop, the Pemaquid Watershed Association, and the Damariscotta River Association, along with the financial support of the local community and funding from the Land for Maine’s Future Program in collaboration with the Maine Department of Conservation. Managing organizations: Owned by the Pemaquid Watershed Association and co-managed by Damariscotta River Association. Trail Abstract:

Baker Forest

The Baker Forest is a 165-acre forest property owned and managed by the DRA. The property was donated by Bob and Margaret Baker of Newcastle in December 2003. The Bakers’ generosity ensures that this outstanding and diverse forest community will be available for present and future generations to enjoy. The gift of land begins on the River Road and extends westward nearly as far as Route One, crossing rocky ridges, flat and once cleared grazing ground, and a lowland stream with a long and current history of beaver activity. Owned and managed by the Bakers since the early 1960’s, this

Whaleback Shell Midden State Historic Site

Whaleback is an 11 acre property owned by the Maine Bureau of Parks and Lands and operated cooperatively with the Damariscotta River Association. Managing organizations: Damariscotta River Association/Partner Owned Trail Abstract: The site once contained a massive oyster shell heap or midden formed over a period of more than 1,000 years by Native Americans. The shells were processed for chicken feed in the late 1800’s, leaving behind just a fraction of the original mounds. Interpretive storyboards relate the history of the middens, their accumulation and destruction, and also share stories of the Upper Damariscotta River. A swinging bench by the shore

Tracy Shore

Tracy Shore is a property of the Town of South Bristol along the eastern shore of Jones Cove on the Damariscotta River. A well-marked system of trails wends its way past vernal pools, cascading streams, and cliffs adorned in rock tripe and ferns, culminating at a promontory affording stunning views of the cove and river. Much of the viewshed is protected by conservation easements donated to the DRA by preservation-minded neighbors. Read “Featured Trail: Discovering Tracy Shore” and see a photo gallery of images (May 26, 2016). Managing organizations:   Partner owned/Damariscotta River Association co-managed Trail Abstract Mr. and Dr. (Mrs.)

Stratton Island

Stratton Island was one of DRA’s very first acquisitions. The 28-acre island was a gift of the late Ann Stratton in 1988. The Strattons of Shreveport, Louisiana traveled to Maine every summer and until 1938 made Hodgdon’s their “menigawum,” which according to family tradition means “island home.” They kept a cow and built a large log cabin on the land. Sign of their habitation can still be seen, but, save for a well-defined foot trail, the human presence has faded into the background. Managing organizations:   Damariscotta River Association. Trail Abstract: Both eagles and osprey call the island home today, and

Sherman Marsh & Carolyn O’Brien Peninsula Preserve

Sherman Marsh is a wonderful place to view wading birds and other wildlife. Managing organizations:   See map for details. Trail Abstract: Sherman Lake is no longer a lake, but the Wildlife Management Area maintains its original name. Acquired by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife in 1996 with the help of DRA, this 95-acre property is varied, little-used, and rich in human history. A high ridge covered in juniper forms the spine of the peninsula and about half-way north a visitor encounters the remains of an old homestead. The adjacent 22-acre Carolyn O’Brien Preserve was a gift of

Salt Bay Heritage Trail

A great walk along the shore and woods of the Great Salt Bay on a combination of boardwalks, bridges, and trails. Managing organizations: Damariscotta River Association Trail Abstract: Along with a large DRA conservation easement on private property, Salt Bay Preserve covers most of Glidden Point, which was bisected by Route 1 in the 1960’s. Beginning with boardwalks across a salt marsh, the three-mile Heritage Trail follows the shoreline of the Great Salt Bay before crossing under Route 1 through an old sheep tunnel. Soon thereafter, a spur to the shore allows access to one of Maine’s most important archaeological sites