Every Day is Earth Day for Stowe Land TrustApril 23, 2018
by METZI ANDERSON, STOWE LAND TRUST
Earth Day is a national day to focus on the environment that was first celebrated in 1970. At Stowe Land Trust (SLT), every day is Earth Day. For thirty years, the greater Stowe community has supported our work to conserve community spaces. SLT has always worked to conserve only those places that are critical to our community’s natural health and sense of well-being. This Earth Day, our role as long-term protectors of these conserved lands has never been more important.
For that reason, we are highlighting a few of our favorite spaces to get out and enjoy the lands that Stowe Land Trust has helped protect and steward over the last 30 years.
Located in the heart of Stowe’s Historic Village, Sunset Rock is a community natural area that hosts public trails. What is now a beautiful backdrop to Stowe had once been proposed as the site for a 23-home development closed off to visitors until the land was purchased by SLT in 1999. To explore this community treasure, park at the Stowe Recreation Path and walk a short but steep distance from Sunset Street up the Sunset Rock Trail for a birds-eye view of Stowe’s Main Street. Continue to the Upper Overlook for a glimpse of Mt. Mansfield.
Wiessner Woods is a special place for Stowe Land Trust and the community. It was donated to SLT by the Wiessner family in 1992, and has been a well-loved walk in the woods ever since. Celebrate the arrival of spring in Vermont by looking for spring’s first wildflowers. Pick up a Vermont wildflower guide at Shaw’s General Store and head for Wiessner Woods to explore the Hardwood Ridge Trail in search of trout lily and trillium. From Stowe Village, take Route 108 (the Mountain Road) 3.5 miles to Edson Hill Road. Turn right onto Edson Hill Road, pass the entrance to an Alpine-style hotel and take the next drive on your right. Park in the Wiessner Woods parking lot on the left and follow signs to the trail head. Parking is not permitted alongside the road.
If big sweeping views of the mountains are what you’re seeking, there’s no better place than Pinnacle Meadow. Pinnacle Meadow is a quick 15-minute hike that offers big rewards. Perched on the north side of Stowe Pinnacle, a popular hiking destination in the summer, Pinnacle Meadow was slated for a 16-house development before it was protected in 2002. From the meadow one can see the Green Mountains, from Camels Hump to Mt. Mansfield, and Sterling Valley to Stowe Valley. Bring a picnic to enjoy in the meadow, or continue to the rocky summit of Stowe Pinnacle. Pinnacle Meadow is located at the end of Upper Pinnacle Road in Stowe Hollow. Completing 32 projects and conserving over 3,500 acres of land in 30 years could not have been possible without our community, board members, dedicated volunteers and many statewide partners.
Join us in experiencing the natural world of Stowe! Explore this interactive map of public access and recreation opportunities on all Stowe Land Trust-protected lands.