The local conservation community received great news recently as Charles and Nancy Butterfield of Hinsdale donated a conservation easement on 244 acres of their land on the north side of Oxbow Road. The land in question runs along the south slope of the ridge which runs west to east from the Mt. Wantastiquet State Forest to just west of Daniels Mountain. The easement will be held by the Monadnock Conservancy, our acclaimed regional land trust, and they are responsible for monitoring the easement in perpetuity.
Nancy and Charles Butterfield stand at the edge of their lawn in Hinsdale, N.H., overlooking the 224 acres of land they had conserved. (Zachary P. Stephens/Brattleboro Reformer)
This project has been in the works for almost 20 years, having been initially surveyed on snowshoes with Mr. Butterfield by Tom Duston of the Chesterfield Conservation Commission and John Summers of the Friends of Pisgah. The concern at the time was protecting the slope just to the south of the proposed Wantastiquet-Monadnock Greenway and Trail. The trail, and a substantial portion of the supporting landscape, is now complete from Brattleboro to Keene. The Monadnock Conservancy, the Chesterfield Conservation Commission and the Friends of Pisgah continue to be active in this project.
The Butterfields deserve great thanks for this donation. Their land is all in Tier I New Hampshire wildlife status (the highest), it protects the southern approaches to Indian Pond, it contains at least one endangered plant (the running groundsel) and is home to several patches of Appalachian dry oak forest, very unusual this far north. The property is a true gem and we thank the Butterfields for their generosity.
Submitted by Tom Duston