Pisgah Hill Preserve

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GPS address:  74 Dougherty Road, New Gloucester, ME

Located on a stretch of New Gloucester’s eastern boundary with Pownal, the Pisgah Hill Preserve and its ridge line provide small old quarries, mixed forests, and beautiful ground cover of lichen and mosses. The preserve provides habitat for raptors, songbirds, upland game birds, waterfowl, deer, coyotes, snowshoe hare, fox, weasels, beavers, porcupine, other small mammals, reptiles and amphibians.  The ridgeline offers winter-time local views, including sunsets and moonrise.

Map.

With the support of many donors and funding sources*, RRCT acquired or placed easements on 195 acres between 2010 and 2016, creating “Pisgah Hill Preserve – North” and “Pisgah Hill Preserve – South” blocks of conserved lands.  Combined with an adjacent 94-acre parcel owned by the Town of Pownal,  the Preserve is part of a public landscape of nearly 300 acres.  More additions are in the works for later years.

  • Dogs are welcome, but on leash or voice control, with strict attention to pet waste removal. Due to deer wintering, we ask that dogs be on leash during periods of deep snow; deer struggle to maintain energy during the winter; dogs and humans cause them to expend precious energy.
  • Smoking is prohibited at all RRCT Preserves.
  • The preserve is open for hiking, snowshoes, and back-country skiing on a one mile loop trail. Equestrian use is by permission only, permission will only be denied if we feel the proposed equestrian use will exceed the capacity and conditions of the land. Please respect various postings on private abutting land; many of these postings aim to protect farm animals from dogs or hunters.

2016 Bridge Status
The trail crosses Quarry Brook which swells to thirty feet width in spring or after rain; a temporary aluminum bridge with one rail spans the entire floodplain. Plan to use caution.  We plan a permanent bridge once our land acquisition plans are more resolved.

Hunting
Safe and responsible hunting  on the Preserve is encouraged.  We promote safe hunting experiences and protect deer by educating users of the hiking trail and their dogs to be respectful of hunters and deer during season, including winter deer yard season. As a courtesy, please call RRCT to inform us if you plan any trapping on the parcel. Hikers should always wear orange during hunting season, on all hikes.

Trailhead
A one mile loop trail begins at a trailhead off Dougherty Rd in New Gloucester, with a stream crossing that will require some agility as noted above. From ME231 (Intervale Road), proceed south 0.5 miles on Dougherty Road and then look for a four car parking lot the left (coming from New Gloucester).

Alternatively, from Pownal, head north on Chadsey Road (dirt) from Allen Road for 0.8 miles. Chadsey (dirt) becomes Dougherty (paved) at the town line. Look for a four car parking lot on the right (coming from Pownal).

GPS address:  74 Dougherty Road, New Gloucester, ME

The lesser trail and lesser trail head off North Pownal Road in New Gloucester is barely marked, and entirely undeveloped. Please respect neighbors if you explore this undeveloped access point to the Preserve for hunting or other reasons. Access to the powerline, then to the Preserve, exists off Winsaw Road.  Backcountry access exists across a Town of Pownal woodlot.

Owner: Royal River Conservation Trust

This project sets the stage for even more trail links and loops and the potential to protect a larger block of undeveloped land. Thank you for your support.

*Funding sources:  Funding for acquisition and capital improvements has come from RRCT private donors, the Land for Maine’s Future program, the Maine Outdoor Heritage Fund, the Casco Bay Estuary Partnership, the Recreational Trails Program (Maine BPL), the Maine Natural Resources Conservation Program (MaineDEP), and many more.