L.L. Bean Maine Land Trust Grant
November 2, 2009
Kennebec Estuary Land Trust Receives Two Grants for Whiskeag Trail
BATH- The Kennebec Estuary Land Trust (KELT) was recently awarded a $4,800 L.L. Bean Maine Land Trust Grant to further construction of the Whiskeag Trail, a 5-mile trail from the Bath Area Family YMCA to KELT’s Thorne Head preserve. The state wide grant program, available through a partnership between Maine Coast Heritage Trust and L.L. Bean, awarded $22,750 to six conservation organizations for land stewardship activities this year.
The majority of the trail will follow Whiskeag Creek, a beautiful tidal water body through mature woods. Located within the Bath city limits and close to the town’s population center, Whiskeag Trail offers a feeling of remoteness and easy access to nature. The trail is intended to encourage recreation, non-motorized transportation, and healthy communities.
KELT is the fiscal agent for Bath Trails, a group of citizens and organizations who have gathered to create a high quality trail system in the City of Bath. Participants include: City of Bath’s Department of Parks and Recreation (co-leader), Bath YMCA, Bath Middle School, Healthy Maine Partnerships, Cool Communities Bath, Bath Cycle and Ski, and interested citizens.
Bath Trails has been guided by The Rivers and Trails program of the National Park Service for the past year, and just learned that they were awarded a second year of technical support and project management to see the trail to its completion.
Volunteers, members of Bath Trails and a field team from the Maine Conservation Corps hope to complete the trail in the summer of 2010. Trail volunteer Bill Milam says, “The most immediate gratification comes from personal thanks by users encountered along the trail. The work accomplished over the past year is impressive and the discussions of future projects promise to provide Bath with an extensive trail system opening recreational opportunities to residents and visitors.” Mr. Milam was recognized as Volunteer of the Month in August by the Maine Conservation Corps for his assistance with the Whiskeag Trail project.
Once built, the Whiskeag Trail will provide a premier outdoor experience for trail enthusiasts. Easy access and close proximity to the downtown and core residential areas makes this a valuable part of the City’s infrastructure and high quality of life. Children, adults, causal hikers and serious outdoors people will all enjoy this fantastic new amenity, right out their back door. KELT is dedicated to providing opportunities for people of all ages and abilities to get out and enjoy nature.
The Kennebec Estuary Land Trust is a membership supported non-profit organization dedicated to conservation of the natural, historic, scenic, cultural and recreational resources of the Kennebec Estuary. It holds easements on over 700 acres of private land and owns seven preserves open for public enjoyment.