Smith Bridge Preserve

NORWAY — On October 22, The Western Foothills Land Trust (WFLT) officially opened Smith Bridge Preserve in Oxford. The newly established preserve offers an enchanting gateway for nature enthusiasts and outdoor adventurers of all ages and interests. Located at 577 Allen Hill Road, Smith Bridge Preserve is minutes from the commercial hubs of Oxford, Paris, and Norway.

WFLT acquired the former Chadbourne Tree Farm tract in October 2021 with the support of The Conservation Fund. It was the first of three former Chadbourne Tree Farm tracts from White Pine Forest LLC (a subsidiary of The Conservation Fund) that WFLT has purchased. The lot comprises three wooded parcels totaling 494 acres in Oxford near the Webber schoolhouse neighborhood.

The preserve’s trails wind through a diverse landscape of pristine forests and picturesque wetlands near Webber Brook and the Little Androscoggin River. The remnants of the bridge abutments of Smith Bridge, one of three covered bridges that once spanned the Little Androscoggin River in the region, are visible at the terminus of the Little Andro Trail, offering a glimpse into the history of the property and a scenic view of the river.

The well-maintained trails showcase the area’s natural beauty and serve as a platform for environmental education and appreciation. Recreation opportunities at the preserve include hiking, trail running, snowshoeing, backcountry ski touring, mountain biking, horseback riding, fishing, hunting, snowmobiling on designated trails, and nature observations.

Western Foothills Land Trust would like to thank the local community, donors, volunteers, and partners who have made the Smith Bridge Preserve a reality. This collaborative effort showcases the dedication to preserving the unique landscapes of Western Maine. Smith Bridge Preserve’s protection and recreation access is made possible through the generous support of the Maine Natural Resource Conservation Program, The Anonymous Foundation, and the Maine Community Foundation, and with the assistance of The Conservation Fund.

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