Here we will keep you updated on the project, we welcome your comments and your input.
Here we will keep you updated on the project, we welcome your comments and your input.
Pack a sandwich and become a sleuth with members of the Easton Conservation Commission and the Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust (ACT) as we lead an exploratory hike looking for tracks and other signs of wildlife this Saturday, Feb. 22.
At 10 a.m. at Easton Town Hall Steve Sabre will present “Unraveling the Mystery of Animal Sign.” Hot drinks and desserts will be provided. Following lunch, those wishing to hike will leave in carpools for the trailhead at Trumpet Round Road to strap on your snowshoes, and start up into the CJCF. A major purpose of the hike is to understand the habits of the Forest’s wildlife. Knowing the location of winter deer yards and fragile denning areas, for example, is valuable information for when we cut trails for hikers, back-country skiers and mountain bikers so the trails do not impinge on sensitive and vital habitat.
This will be a moderately vigorous hike lasting about three hours, so bring a water bottle, dress warmly and bring your snowshoes. Please leave your dogs at home for this one. For more information call 823-5755. If our New England weather does not cooperate, only the indoor portion of the program will be held.
Everyone is invited to two events on Sunday, Oct. 13.
Hike the Forest. A new route, for those who’ve been there before! Meet at 10 a.m. at the end of Dyke Road in Sugar Hill. Plan for 2 - 4 hours, there are plenty of options. As always, kids and dogs are welcome. If you have a 4WD please bring that. We will drive to the big log landing in Landaff and walk up onto the Forest from there (you can also walk or bike to the log landing).
Community Potluck at Easton Town Hall. Bring your favorite dish and spirited beverage to the Town Hall on Route 116 in Easton starting at 5 p.m. This will be a great time to learn more about the Forest and see how you can be involved. We’ll have maps and photos, and describe field work for this winter and next spring – like animal tracking, mountain bike route planning and trail building, and bird surveys.
But most of all it’s a time to celebrate a fantastic community success!
Please call ACT volunteer Angela Broscoe for more information - (978) 828-5903 (cell) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Cooley-Jericho Community Forest has a fine variety of birds, some of which are unusual for this area. On Sunday May 26, starting at 9 a.m., we’ll take a walk up into the forest and look for birds and other sings of wildlife, which should be abundant.
Everyone is invited to join us at the end of Dyke Road in Sugar Hill, where we cars can be parked. Bring your kids, dogs, bug dope, and water. We can walk from there and/or take 4-wheel drive vehicles up to the big log landing facing southwest into Landaff. From there we’ll walk up old skid trails into the forest. The views will be spectacular.
For more information please call Rebecca Brown at 603-823-7777 or e-mail email@example.com.
LANDAFF – Everyone is invited to come on a hike into the proposed Cooley-Jericho Community Forest on Sunday, March 10 at 1:30 p.m.
The hike will start from the end of Jim Noyes Hill Road in Landaff (in Sugar Hill, it’s called Dyke Road). You can reach this spot from Pearl Lake Road in Lisbon, driving around Pearl Lake, taking a left onto Jim Noyes Hill Road (it is a T, you must go left or right), and going to the end.
As we all know, it’s an unpredictable time of year. Hopefully there will be lots of snow! But be prepared for ice. Bring your snowshoes or other traction (Yak Trax, etc.), camera, kids, and dogs. This hike will be good for people of all ages who are reasonably fit. We will walk up a Class VI road and then up a snowmachine trail to a large log landing with great views of Landaff and beyond. We’ll then walk up into the land on old skid roads.
Promise: no bushwhacking (unless you want to! The moose trails are pretty easy to follow now).
The views are magnificent and there is a lot of wildlife activity on this young forested landscape. We will see lots and lots of moose sign, deer, and likely bobcat and we will look for pine marten tracks. If we are exceptionally lucky we may find the track of a lynx.
Sunday’s hike is a great opportunity to see the rugged and beautiful land of the proposed community forest. Join members of the planning committee of residents of Easton, Sugar Hill, Lisbon, Landaff, Bethlehem, and Franconia who have been working together to create the 840-acre community forest.
For more information, contact Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust volunteer Angela Broscoe at (978) 828-5903 (cell) or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Directions and information are also at www.townforest.org. Please send us an e-mail or leave a phone message that you will be joining the hike (hot chocolate and snacks will be provided). Any last minutes changes will also be on the website.
Everyone is invited to join a snowshoe hike on the proposed Cooley-Jericho Community Forest this Sunday afternoon, Feb. 3 at 1:30 p.m.
The hike will start from the parking area at the end of Trumpet Round Road in Sugar Hill. Trumpet Round is off of Jericho Road, which is a left turn as you head uphill on Dyke Road.
Bring your snowshoes, camera, kids, and dogs. This hike will be good for people of all ages. It will go uphill through young conifers and a mixed hardwood forest. Moose and deer abound on this land, and we may get lucky and find tracks of bobcat and American marten. If we are exceptionally lucky we may find the track of a lynx.
Smaller than a fisher and stouter than a weasel, American martens (also called pine martens) are a rare and important species in New Hampshire. They were nearly trapped out, but have rebounded after being reintroduced. Their numbers are still small enough, and their status uncertain enough, that they are listed as “threatened” in the state.
According to NH Fish & Game, marten are of particular concern because of their status as an “umbrella species.” Their large range and sensitivity to disturbance make them broad indicators of ecosystem health. Marten have been seen in the vicinity of the community forest. Martens like large tracts of open space.
Sunday is a great opportunity to see the rugged and beautiful land of the proposed community forest, and to get some exercise before the Super Bowl!
For more information, contact Rebecca Brown at the Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust, 603-823-7777, or e-mail email@example.com. Please send us an e-mail or leave a phone message that you will be joining the hike (hot chocolate and snacks will be provided) and also so we may contact you in case of really horrid weather. Any last minutes changes will also be on the website, www.townforest.org.
The proposed Cooley-Jericho Community Forest was featured this morning on New Hampshire Public Radio news, and will be rebroadcast this evening. Listen here and see on the on-line text and photos.
Great news – the state of New Hampshire’s two major conservation funding programs have made significant commitments to the Cooley-Jericho Community Forest. The NH Land & Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) commits $45,000 for acquiring the land. And the 2013 State Conservation Committee Moose Plate grant program has committed $25,000.
In addition, the Davis Conservation Foundation has given $20,000 for the project.
This brings our fundraising total to $557,000.
We need $650,000 to close by June, 2013. Our total project budget is $725,000.
These awards are extremely competitive. Being recognized by LCHIP and the Moose Plate program are great honors – the committees that review the millions of dollars worth of proposals represent a cross-section of our state, and it is a very detailed and informed process. This is really a stamp of approval from the citizens of New Hampshire.
The Davis Conservation Foundation is a generous and extremely important private foundation dedicated to conserving the forests and important habitats of northern New England. We are grateful to all of these funders who see the importance and potential of this Community Forest.
The proposed Cooley – Jericho Community Forest has been awarded a $100,000 grant by the Open Space Institute. The funds will be used toward the purchase of the 840-acre property.
The proposed community forest is in Easton and has major impact on Sugar Hill, Landaff, and Franconia as well as Easton. Citizens from the four towns have been working with the Ammonoosuc Conservation Trust (ACT) to acquire the land and create the forest, which would be managed for the benefit of the participating towns.
Recently the project planning committee hosted a tour of the property for the U.S. Forest Service. Forest Service experts in wildlife, trails, and forestry spent a day walking the land and discussing how best to protect and enhance wildlife habitat while creating a multi-use trail system.
“This is an outstanding opportunity,” said Roger Simmons, the natural resources staff officer in the WMNF Supervisors office in Campton. “There is plenty of room here to do excellent recreational trail building, plan for future forestry, and protect some very outstanding wildlife habitat.”
District Biologist Clara Weloth noted that the land provides plenty of young forest habitat that is very important for large animals like moose and deer, as well as potential range for American marten and lynx – both species being watched closely in the state. It also is nesting habitat for a variety of songbirds whose numbers are declining throughout the Northeast. For example, ACT Executive Director Rebecca Brown reported that this summer, numerous pairs of Canada warblers were on the property.
Suzanne Beauchesne, Justin Klein, Gardner Kellogg, and Dan Kenerson, who have been involved with the planning for the forest, detailed their goal of mountain bikes trails on the land. WMNF Assistant District Ranger for recreation, Tom Giles, agreed it would be good to look at extending the Jericho Trail, which starts on Route 116 in Easton and ends at the old fire tower at the boundary of the community forest property.
Emily Platt, an art teacher at Littleton High School and also a member of the forest planning committee, described her goal of using the community forest as an outdoor classroom for both science education as well as creative arts. The Forest Service representatives offered their resources through the “Trail to Every Classroom” program.
Throughout the spring, summer, and fall, ACT and the planning committee have hosted hikes and bird walks on the proposed forest. According to Brown, snowshoe hikes and animal tracking excursions will be scheduled as soon as the snow cover is suitable. The tracking work will help in the creation of a natural resources inventory for the land.
ACT is raising $650,000 to purchase the land, with a deadline of next June. To date $472,000 has been raised for the project. For more information, and to receive notices of planned hikes, see the planning committee records, as well as maps and photos of the land, please visit www.townforest.org.
Staff from the U.S. Forest Service is visiting the forest on Saturday Oct. 13. They are interested in our trail ideas – particularly extending the Jericho Trail (WMNF), and also want to understand this land in the context of their plans for harvesting in the Easton area.
We will meet at 9 a.m. at the end of Dyke Road in Sugar Hill. We’ll drive up to the Landaff access point and walk up from there.We plan to be done by around 1 p.m.
Everyone is invited for a hike this Saturday Sept. 1 through the proposed Cooley – Jericho Community Forest.
Saturday’s hike will start at 9 a.m. at the end of Dyke Road in Sugar Hill. We will walk – or drive if there are 4-wheel drive vehicles present – to the trail going into the forest from Landaff. The walk will be on a Class VI Dyke Road, a gravel logging road, and then old skid roads as we gain elevation. We’ll be back by noon. Bring your kids, dogs, snacks, water, and bug dope! Binoculars and camera, too – there are fantastic views in all directions from little known vantage points.