NORTHEAST WILDERNESS TRUST
17 STATE STREET, SUITE 302
MONTPELIER, VT 05602
info [@] newildernesstrust.org
The impressive diversity of habitats found within this landscape includes large, exposed ledges that slope steeply down to a clear and rocky stream, which trickles through floodplain benches and wet forest. Small seeps where groundwater surfaces defrost earlier than other places in the spring and bring fresh food to forest dwellers emerging from their winter hibernation. Beaver moderated wetlands flow gradually into the Eastern River, a tributary of the Kennebec River.
Wildlands Ecologist, Northeast Wilderness Trust
This section of the Eastern River is tidal, so the river’s character changes dramatically depending on whether the ocean’s tide is in or out. When the tide swells, the riverway is fully flooded and navigable. When the tide recedes, the riverbed is exposed, revealing a system of mudflats with just a few small streams. From an eagle’s point of view, the Eastern River twists and turns, winding along until she joins the Kennebec River, which soon after meets the Atlantic Ocean. Across the river from Tidal Bends Wilderness Preserve lies the Kennebec Land Trust’s 50-acre Eastern River Preserve, ensuring protection of both sides of this stretch of the river.
Tidal Bends Wilderness Preserve includes mature forest and abundant coarse woody debris with almost no stumps, indicating that the land has not been logged in many decades. Old road beds and remnants of stone foundations highlight the once pastoral setting that, once cleared, is now forested. Now that the land is protected by Northeast Wilderness Trust, it will offer safe spaces for our wild kin – the return to wild is well underway.
This land is open to the public for quiet backcountry enjoyment such as walking, nature study, photography, birdwatching, snowshoeing, and hunting and fishing by permission. If you are interested in hunting or fishing permission for Tidal Bends Wilderness Preserve, please visit our Hunting Program page. Contact hannah [at] newildernesstrust.org with any additional questions.
Photography by Shelby Perry