Donors Unite to Complete Warren Brook Campaign

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Warren Brook Wetlands with Two Hikers

Nearly 200 donors have helped secure a 191-acre conservation easement near the headwaters of Warren Brook.  The project establishes a permanent land stewardship fund and enables the eventual development of a public access trail from Route 109. 

This success not only protects these vital acres of beautiful wetlands and hills, but has helped widen the circle of conservation in our watershed and town. The parcel contains vital habitat for wildlife and joins other nearby protected lands to form a largely unfragmented forest block.

The easement includes more than 3,200 feet of frontage on both sides of Warren Brook, with more than 50 acres of wetlands, which filter snow melt and storm water runoff.  Above the wetlands are elevated lands, whose development would have a detrimental effect on clear water, natural species and scenic beauty. This easement forever protects these 191-acres from being developed.  

Conservation easements are a wonderful way for landowners to protect their land while retaining ownership. Those who want to learn more about easements or to explore future plans for their property should contact Executive Director, Bob Cole at bobcole@lakewentworthfoundation.org or (603) 534-0222.

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Warren Brook Wetlands with Beaver Lodge

Square Hill Adventure

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Trish & Bob Leipold Lead an Autumn Hike on Foundation’s Large Woodland Property

Bob and Trish Leipold hosted board members for a walking tour of the Lake Wentworth Foundation property on Square Hill.  As neighbors to this deeply forested parcel, the Leipolds’ love these woods and shared sightings of all kinds. Looking skyward or down at the path, hikers saw the wonders of the forest from towering trees to bear scat.

The Leipolds’ skilled observations and thoughtful guiding made for a memorable morning.  Coffee, cinnamon rolls and the view east over the Wentworth Watershed toward Copple Crown were a treat. We thank the Leipolds for sharing it and helping us appreciate our part of the hill.
 
Here’s the LINK for more photos from the Square Hill hike.

Lake Wentworth Foundation launches its campaign
to protect a 191-acre parcel along Warren Brook

The Lake Wentworth Foundation has launched a major conservation initiative to protect 191 acres at the headwaters of Warren Brook, a significant tributary that feeds Lake Wentworth, the Smith River, Crescent Lake, and Lake Winnipesaukee.

The Warren Brook Campaign seeks to raise $115,000 for the purchase of a conservation easement on the land, for the establishment of a land stewardship fund to protect the property in perpetuity, and for construction of a public access trail from Route 109. 

Warren Brook and its wetlands

Warren Brook and its wetlands

“This effort exemplifies the Foundation’s mission to protect and preserve the water quality and natural resources of Lake Wentworth, Crescent Lake, and their watershed, now and for future generations,” said Bob Cole, Foundation Executive Director. “The watershed covers 37 square miles, almost all within the town of Wolfeboro, so its protection enhances life here for residents and visitors alike.”

The new easement will include more than 3,200 feet of frontage on both sides of Warren Brook, with more than 50 acres of wetlands, rated Tier 1 by NH Fish & Game as a highest-ranked habitat. These wetlands maintain water quality by filtering nutrients and sediments from storm water runoff.

Warren Brook contains highly ranked habitat for wildlife as identified by the New Hampshire Wildlife Action Plan, and the targeted parcel joins other protected lands—Copple Crown Mountain, the Jones Brook Wildlife Management Area, and the Moose Mountains Reservation—to form a largely unfragmented forest block.

Above the wetlands, there are elevated lands whose development will have a significant effect on water quality, wildlife species, and the scenic beauty of the region. The conservation easement will forever protect these 191 acres from being developed.  See the pictures from the Warren Brook Paddle on July 23, 2016.  

More than 100 people attended a campaign launch event on June 26 at Lake View Inn Bed & Breakfast. Speakers included Jack Savage, Vice President, Communications and Outreach at the Society for the Preservation of New Hampshire Forests and Chair of the Board at Moose Mountains Regional Greenways. Savage outlined the importance of this project in the context of similar work being done in this area as well as throughout the state.  View slideshow of photos from the campaign launch.  

Cole echoed Savage’s call for partnerships in these efforts. “We are blessed to be united in our commitment to this watershed. Our planet needs our help, and while we cannot take on all the problems of the world—overpopulation, excessive development, water pollution and climate change—we can act locally and together.”

Residents and property owners in the watershed have received a mailing that describes the conservation project and asks for their support. The current call for action echoes a similar project completed in 1977, when 400 donors united to purchase and protect Stamp Act Island, a mile-long island and bird sanctuary at the heart of Lake Wentworth. 

More information about the Warren Brook Campaign can be found at the Foundation’s website, lakewentworthfoundation.org, or on its Facebook page. Cole can be reached at 603-534-0222 or BobCole@lakewentworthfoundation.org.

The Warren Brook conservation area

The Warren Brook conservation area

Fernald Brook protection aims to reduce soil runoff

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Implementation of the Wentworth/Crescent Watershed Management Plan is taking another step forward as project organizers begin an effort to protect Fernald Brook, one of the largest tributaries to Lake Wentworth, from the effects of stormwater runoff.

Officials from the Lake Wentworth Foundation, the Town of Wolfeboro, and the project’s lead engineering firm, Tighe and Bond, dug a series of test pits on April 13 behind Auto Care Plus (formerly Trites Automotive and Miller Chevrolet) to determine how best to capture storm runoff from the parking areas that cover the property. During rainstorms and snow melt, water flows across the lots and towards Fernald Brook, bringing with it the potential for sand and contaminants from nearby roads to reach the stream.

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Foundation names Cole as Executive Director

Robert W. Cole

Robert W. Cole

The Lake Wentworth Foundation has appointed Robert Cole as their Interim Executive Director.   Cole moves from his role as a Foundation trustee, where he served on the Development and Nominating & Governance Committees.

The Foundation enters its 20th year side-by-side with the Lake Wentworth Association, emerging in recent years as a proactive conservation group with a mission “to protect and preserve the water quality, natural resources and scenic beauty of Lake Wentworth, Crescent Lake and their watershed, now and for future generations.”  

 In 2012, the Foundation, in partnership with town and state organizations, completed the Lake Wentworth/ Crescent Lake Watershed Management Plan.  Projects are underway to implement the many recommendations of the plan, all aimed at a 15% reduction in phosphorus, the most prominent threat to water quality.

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