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Autumn Events

Check out the ACTIVITIES PAGE to see autumn hikes in Vernon, Somers, and Stafford areas. 

Landmark September 2016 Issue
State Forest Harvet Sign: near Boothroyd Preserve
June 12 and 25, 2016: Swann Farm Work Parties

On June 12th and again on June 25th. NCLT held work parties at the Swann Farm orchard to remove the approximately 270 trees which needed to be rogued. A total of 14 volunteers participated and all the trees were removed except for the eleven which will provide nuts for the new seed orchards. Some of the larger trunks will be burned for firewood this coming winter. The remainder was stacked into brush piles which will also be burned next winter.  Photos courtesy of Ginny Patsun and Barbara Contois.  Photos

June 4, 2016: Tankerhoosen Walk on National Trails Day

On National Trails Day June 4, 2016, George Arthur and Karl Hasel of the NCLT led a hike on the Tankerhoosen DEEP property in Vernon.  Photos

June 1, 2016: Hike at Ernie Boothroyd Preserve
The 58 acre Ernie Boothroyd Preserve was acquired by NCLT in 2010.  Last year, our stewardship volunteers created a loop trail to showcase the property.  This 1.2 mile walk included stops to look at and discuss items of interest along the way including Mountain Laurel.  
April 16, 2016: McCann Family Farm Work Party

Eight NCLT volunteers joined leader Wes Smith at McCann Family Farm in Somers on Saturday, April 16th to clear the Whit Davis Trail along Gulf  Stream. It was a beautiful morning to be outdoors and an impressive amount of work was accomplished. Our thanks to Richard Bailey, Pat Boudreau, Barbara Contois,  David Dunn, Jim Gage, Albie Grant, Dick Hutton, Martin Smith and Jay Tian for their hard work. Another work party will be scheduled in several weeks to continue this project.  Photos

Northern Connecticut Land Trust Announcements
2014-2015 Annual Report/February 2016 LANDMARK Newsletter

The 2014-2015 Annual Report  and the February 2016 LANDMARK Newsletter are available.  Read about the officers and what the Board has been up to the past year - it's certainly been a busy one for the Board.  Read about the MassConn Sustainable Partnership, an updated list of properties and stewards and even a Cougar!  If you are interested in volunteering, please contact us at

Talcottville History and Fall Foliage Walk October 24, 2015

On October 24, 2015 beginning in the historic Talcottville section of Vernon, the annual three-mile hike to see the Talcott Ravine, Hop River Rail Trail, historic bridges and buildings, the sites of former mills, and fall foliage occurred. Geologically, the walk went through the Portland Arkose, over the eastern border fault into the border fault deformed zone, then into the Glastonbury Gneiss, and sand and gravel deposits. Speakers included Jon Roe, historian and webmaster of the Tankerhoosen/ Talcottville web sites, and Susan Barlow of the Manchester Land Conservation Trust.

Annual Meeting Sunday, September 20, 2015

The pot luck dinner and Annual Meeting, was held at the Somers Congregational Church with a social time followed by dinner starting at 6:00.  A short members business meeting to elect officers and directors for 2016 was followed by a presentation by Director Walt Moody discussing bees and his activities with beekeeping and honey production.  The  slate presented was  President – Patrice Carson, Somers; 1st V. President – Wes Smith, Somers; 2nd V. President –  Rick Dewey, Stafford; Treasurer – Jim Gage, Ellington; Secretary –  Paul Lagel, Enfield; Directors: Rick Dewey, Stafford;  Arend Knuttel, East Windsor; Patrice Carson, Somers ; Paul Lagel, Enfield; Walt Moody, Ellington.  LATEST LANDMARK NEWSLETTER #29 SEPTEMBER 2015

Whitaker Woods Work Party: August 29, 2015

Wes Smith led a work party at Whitaker Woods on Saturday, August 29 to work on maintaining trails. A total of six NCLT volunteers participated. Our thanks to Wes Smith, Jim Gage, Gene Julian, Rich and Carole Marzi, and Barbara Contois for their help. Photos taken by B. Contois are on the gallery page.

National Trails Day June 7, 2015

On Sunday June 7, 2015 a total of twenty-eight people participated in 2 hikes in Somers celebrating CFPA's Trails Weekend. One group start at the top of Soapstone Mountain and hiked down a series of trails to NCLT's Whitaker Woods, stopping along the way to talk about wildlife habitats as well as protection of open space. The second started at Whitaker Woods hiking past the beautiful stone walls on the property ending at the Soapstone Mountain parking area.

Belding Wildlife Management Area: May 9, 2015

On Saturday, May 9th twenty people enjoyed a walk at the state owned Belding Wildlife Management Area in Vernon. The walk was led by DEEP Wildlife Biologist Jane Seymour and focused on migratory songbirds and bird habitats. For those who missed this opportunity to visit Belding,   Photos 

Bald Mountain Bird Habitat Assessment: August 20, 2015

In 2014 Audubon Connecticut received a government grant to conduct assessments of forest bird habitat throughout Connecticut. NCLT responded to Audubon's search for landowners having plots of forested land who were interested in participating by submitting proposals for both Bald Mountain Preserve and Whitaker Woods. Bald Mountain Preserve was accepted as one of over 30 properties to be assessed in 2014.

The assessment was performed jointly by Audubon Connecticut, Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, forester Eric Hansen and several NCLT members on August 20th. The complete report can be found on the Bald Mountain Preserve property page.  Whitaker Woods is still included on a list additional properties which may receive assessments this summer. 
Swann Farm Chestnut Orchard Harvest: September 27, 2014

As NCLT members are well aware, since 2007 we have partnered with the American Chestnut Foundation (TACF) to create and maintain an experimental chestnut orchard in Ellington. For the past couple years the trees have been mature enough to begin producing chestnuts.

At the end of October TACF will be conducting an experiment to determine what percentage of nuts germinate and successfully take root under conditions that occur naturally in a forest or wood edge setting. These conditions are very different than those in TACF orchards. The nuts planted in orchards are carefully placed in a specific planting mix approximately one inch below the surface then watered and fertilized after they germinate. Deer fence surrounding the orchard keeps out deer and plastic tubes around each planted nut protects them from squirrels, mice and voles, all of whom find chestnuts very tasty. Under these conditions approximately 85% to 90% of the nuts successfully germinate and produce trees. Nuts that drop from trees in a forest or along a wood edge in the fall do not have any of these advantages and the percentage of nuts that actual survive the winter to grow into trees the following spring is expected to be very low.

The TACF experiment will consist of broadcasting a large number of chestnuts on the ground over a plot of specific size. The plot will then be lightly disc harrowed. This will slightly bury some of the nuts simulating burial by squirrels. For this experiment FACF estimates that at least 10,000 nuts will be required.

On Saturday, September 27, 2014 five NCLT stewardship volunteers helped NCLT answer the call for chestnuts by collecting 157 pounds of chestnut burs from our orchard. Once the burs were dried and the nuts removed, over 2,300 nuts were sent to TACF to be added to those collected in other orchards for the direct planting experiment.   Visit the Photo Gallery for photos of our volunteers participating in the 2014 chestnut harvest.  Thank you to Barbara Contois for taking these wonderful photos of the Chestnut Harvest.

Talcott Ravine Loop Trail Archaeology/Geology hike: September 27, 2014

Over 90 people attended this Annual event and a must for anyone interested in geology, archaeology, history, nature, architecture and walking! On September 27 enthusiasts met at the Talcottville Congregational Church for a three-mile hike to see the Talcottville gorge, Hop River Rail Trail, historic bridges and buildings, the sites of former mills, and early fall foliage. Geologically, the walk began on the Portland Arkose,  over the eastern border fault into the border fault deformed zone, then into the Glastonbury Gneiss, and sand and gravel deposits. Speakers included geologist Dr. Gary Robbins, from the University of Connecticut, Gail Faherty, director of the Northern CT Land Trust, Jon Roe, historian and webmaster of the Tankerhoosen and Talcottville web sites: and, and Susan Barlow of the Manchester Land Conservation Trust.  Photos at and

Learning about nature! July 28, 2014

On July 28, 2014, Richard Bailey and Leslie Grant led a short walk at McCann Family Farm for 14 children and 3 teachers from Lego Creative Daycare in Enfield on July 28th. The walk was organized in response to a request to NCLT for a walk to allow the children to experience and learn about "wilderness". The walk lasted a little over an hour and ended when a thunderstorm threatened. Along the way we talked about things found along the trail from wild grapes and snails to poison ivy and nettles. See the wonderful thank you notes from the children.

Boothroyd Preserve Balanced Boulder Trail Hike: June 21, 2014

On June 21, 2014 thirteen people attended the hike on the Balanced Boulder trail in perfect weather. The photos shows most of the hikers.  Photo by Albie Grant. 






Chestnut Orchard Inoculation Work Party: June 13, 2014

On Friday June 13th  NCLT volunteers joined Kendra Gurney from The American Chestnut Foundation to inoculate the Swann Farm orchard with two strains of chestnut blight. In spite of the wet forecast, the entire orchard of about 250 trees was inoculated in three hours and finished just before the rain started. The inoculation is the first step in determining which trees have the best combination of blight resistance and pure American characteristics. Photos by Barbara Contois.

Northern Connecticut Land Trust Celebrates 25 Years! June 3, 2012

On June 3, 2012, members celebrated the NCLT 25th Anniversary!  What an accomplishment and one that the Board of Directors is very proud to relay.  Thank you to all the members, volunteers, sponsors and others who have made the NCLT a vital part of the northern Connecticut community.  The 25 year mark is also a milestone as the NCLT now holds 1334 acres of farmland, woodlands and open space.   

Board member and volunteer extraordinare Jerry Stage (above) was conferred a placque in recognition for his years of chairing the Stewardship Committee and being an active member of the Board.  The Board of Directors named the trail at McCann Farm the "Jerry Stage Trail".  The event was held at Worthington Pond Farm and Garden ( in Somers, Ct.  This beautiful venue is owned by Dan Roullier and many thanks to his gracious donation of the  facility.  The band Juniper Hill Jumpers Jazz Band, played Dixieland jazz, blues and some country/western.  Other sponsors who deserve a big round of applause and appreciation include:  Big Y, Geisslers (Somers), Price Chopper (Vernon), Dunkin Donuts (Somers), The Country Butcher (Tolland), La Brioche Bakery (Vernon), Randazzos Package Store (Stafford), Webbs Package Store (Ellington), Tolland Cordials (Tolland), Village Spirit (Tolland) and Chestnut Hill Nursery (Stafford).   Many thanks to Ingrid Aarrestad who organized the event and the "crew":  Catherine Duffield of Guilford and Bev Kurtz, Mary Mitta and Nancy Parizek of Stafford. 

Photos of Anniversary Party on Facebook (Photo Credits:  Gaymarie Lehrer)
Photos of Anniversary Party in Gallery:  New Photos added (Photo Credits:  Steve Glad & Karl Hasel) 


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