Wells River Conservation Area

Newbury, Vermont

Wells River

Wildlife & Watershed Protection
Wildlife & Watershed Protection
Wildlife & Watershed Protection
Wildlife & Watershed Protection
Fishing Area
Fishing Area
Swimming Hole
Swimming Hole
69-acres of protected open space right next to the Blue Mountain School - an outdoor classroom open to all
Dogs allowed on leash
Dogs allowed on leash
Hiking
Hiking
  • Public access: Yes
  • Activities: walking, swimming, birding, photography, fishing, nature study
  • Caretaker: Town of Newbury
Wells River Conservation Area Newbury, Vermont Wells River

Wells River Conservation Area

With over 8,000 feet along the Wells River, this conservation land has diverse, high-quality wetlands, forestlands, and prime agricultural soils. One of the last pieces of the old Leete Dairy Farm, thanks to community leaders and a farsighted vision, today it’s a community park.

In the fall of 1999 Alice Allen, a longtime dairy farmer and chair of the Newbury Conservation Commission, saw a for sale sign: 69-acres right next to Blue Mountain Union School. Tucked between the elementary school and the meandering Wells River with an abandoned railroad bed that’s now the Cross Vermont Trail, it was clear this could be an incredible community park and outdoor classroom. But first the community had to get on board.

Vermont River Conservancy and the Conservation Commission presented the idea to the Newbury Select Board, suggesting that the town take on ownership of the land. Backing-up the presentation, teachers and students at Blue Mountain wrote letters to the Select Board, identifying the area as a “hands-on, natural science resource, right here in our backyards.” With this community backing — and support from donations near and far — Vermont River Conservancy bought the land, added a conservation easement, then donated the land to Newbury.

Today it’s an outdoor classroom, where visitors will find a network of walking trails, places to dip a toe or cast a line, and a spot to pause along the Cross Vermont Trail.

Conservation Details

  • River: Wells River
  • Acreage: 69.00
  • River frontage (ft): 8,000

Directions

Take Route 302 south to Wells River. Shortly after crossing I-91, the Industrial Park Road and the entrance to Blue Mountain Union School will be on your left. Turn left on Blue Mountain Union School access road. Continue to end of parking lot and park near physical plant. Follow trail down hill and trending in a general easterly direction across railbed. Follow trail up slope with river on right to the protected parcel.

Photos

Donate