BETHEL — The Mahoosuc Land Trust has a full slate of activities starting Friday, Sept. 26, and culminating Saturday, Oct. 4, with a Step Falls nature walk.

The trust will offer several opportunities to celebrate its unique corner of the world as part of Great Maine Outdoor Weekend. That statewide event invites people of all ages to “come play outside” from Sept. 26-28, Jolan Ippolito, trust spokeswoman, said recently in an email.

From 12:30 to 1:45 p.m. Friday, students from the Eddy School will construct fairy houses along the nature trail at the land trust’s office on Mayville Road (Route 2) in Bethel.

“Come and watch the masters at work,” Ippolito said. “Houses will remain through the weekend, when others of all ages can try their hand at making their own.”

Starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday, hikers are invited to meet at the Albany Mountain Trailhead for a four-mile climb to panoramic views, she said.

South of Bethel, take Patte Brook Road off  Route 5 and follow signs to Crocker Pond Campground, turning left on Forest Road 18. Follow that road 0.6 miles to the trailhead, Ippolito said.


At 10 a.m. Saturday, a bike trip along rolling hills and a geology field trip to sites of glacial evidence will both leave from the Taylor/Newsom home, she said. From Route 26, take Middle Intervale Road for three miles, then turn left on Winslow Road and drive to the second house. It is 0.4 miles from the intersection.

Hikers, bikers and field trip participants will all meet back at the Newsom home for a barbecue between 12:30 and 1 p.m. Burgers, hot dogs and buns will be provided. Participants are asked to bring a dish to share. For hikers, a cooler will be provided at the trailhead to store their food, Ippolito said.

While all this is happening, the land trust’s 25th anniversary Art Show will open at the Mahoosuc Land Trust Office on Mayville Road at 11 a.m.

There will be a display of work by local photographers, artists and writers that celebrates the unique beauty of the trust area. Additionally, an opportunity will be provided to press apples and drink fresh cider.

At 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 4, Roger Zimmerman will lead the Step Falls nature walk in Newry. Ippolito said Zimmerman is a graduate of the Maine Master Naturalist and Yellowstone Association Naturalist certification programs.

“He is a ski guide and a registered Maine guide, and has a particular interest in wolves, though no wolf sightings are expected on the Nature Walk,” she said.


Since assuming ownership of the Step Falls Preserve on Oct. 26, 2012, from The Nature Conservancy, the Mahoosuc Land Trust has made improvements to the trail and the parking lot.

In 1961, The Nature Conservancy acquired Step Falls from the Wight Family of Newry whose descendants still own the land on both sides of the 24-acre preserve.

The hike is an approximately one-mile round-trip, Ippolito said.

“This hike will be an opportunity to view the work that has been done, as well as to explore the natural landscape with an expert guide,” she said. “The walk will focus on ‘What’s there?’ and ‘How did it get there?'”

The New England landscape reflects the junction of natural and cultural changes, she said.

“Step Falls reflects these changes, and has aspects of both geological and natural interest, including a lone eastern white cedar,” she said.


Hikers are to meet at Step Falls Trailhead, just south of Grafton Notch State Park on Route 26. It is eight miles north of the intersection of Route 26 and Route 2 in Newry.

Participants are encouraged to carpool since parking space is limited.

“Please do not park on the neighbors’ property,” Ippolito said. “Please wear boots or good walking shoes, and bring rain gear, water, snack and what you need for personal comfort.”

For more information about the activities or the land trust, call 207-824-3806 or email

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