Events and Programs

Click on the options below to learn more about various Events and Programs with RRCT.

Volunteer Trail Steward Program

As RRCT conserves more land in the watershed, dedicated volunteer presence on our preserves is more important than ever. Volunteer Trail Stewards have a rewarding role in which they become closely connected with a special place while acting as RRCT’s eyes, ears, and extra hands. Resources and more information here.

RRCT 400 Footer Club: Self-led trail challenge

RRCT 400 Footer Club is a self-led trail challenge. We’ve listed ten local conservation destinations each at an elevation near 400 feet above sea level. Complete them all, win a badge, and win membership in this growing club. Club members invest in cultures of responsible land stewardship, and inclusivity. More information: RRCT 400 Footer Club

Trail Crew: Wednesdays 10 am

Trail Crew features volunteers who gather each Wednesday at 10 am (and as scheduled) to work on RRCT trails and preserves — as well as RRCT’s many trail partnerships — in Yarmouth, North Yarmouth, Pownal, New Gloucester, Durham, Gray, and Auburn. We are always welcome to new volunteers, one-time volunteers, kids, and more. Details and schedule here.

Town of Pownal, Town Meeting, Warrant re Conservation Easement – June 17, 2024 (Monday) at 7pm

The Pownal Select Board and the Pownal Conservation Commission propose that RRCT hold a conservation easement on a town-owned 90-acre woodlot on Elmwood Road, to “Keep Pownal Pownal.” The Select Board and Conservation Commission also propose to raise funds to survey a town-owned woodlot on Sweetser & Allen Roads, prior to 2025 discussion of a conservation easement. Both of these proposals will be on the June 17, 2024, Town Meeting Warrant (7pm at Pownal Elementary). The proposal was well-received at two public hearings in April and May, after years of work by the Pownal Conservation Commission.

WARRANT ARTICLE 29 (“VOTE YES”): Appropriating funds to survey the Sweetser Road wood lot does not mean that a conservation easement will automatically follow. The Conservation Commission and Select Board may consider conservation of this parcel — abutting RRCT’s Pisgah Hill Preserve — in the future.

WARRANT ARTICLE 33 (“VOTE YES”): To see if the Town will enter into an easement agreement with the Royal River Conservation Trust for property located on Elmwood Road, Map 9, Lot 43, or to see what action the Town will take. See, Warrant Exhibit I.

Answers to frequently asked questions regarding Warrant Article #33:

  • The proposed 90-acre Elmwood Road conservation easement on the town-owned woodlot takes nothing away from current practice, except for prohibiting dumping clean fill in most scenarios.
  • The conservation easement would mean the town continues to own the parcel, would allow the town to continue to raise funds by forest management of the parcel, and would allow the town to fully manage hunting and trails.
  • Development of the parcel however would be limited by the deeded conservation easement, limited to forestry and outdoor recreation.
  • The town invited the conservation easement, concluding that the conservation easement is the best way to keep the town woods “the way they are today, forever.” Future Select Boards and future Town Meetings will be able to resist development pressure on this parcel.
  • RRCT will be able to manage a “primary trail” on the parcel that would better connect Bradbury Mountain to Pineland Public Reserve Land, for hikers and trail runners, with trailhead parking on a parcel already owned by RRCT. This trail would allow avoidance of the powerlines, or a loop using the powerlines.
  • Easement Section III.A.a: The town may close trails including the Primary Trail during rifle hunting season.
  • Easement Section III.A.a: The town may make rules on dogs and leashes.
  • Easement Section III.A.b: The town, with the land trust’s consent, may close the Primary Trail to types of uses such as bicycles, for safety or to minimize conflicts. The town has full jurisdiction over any trails beyond the Primary Trail, with no need for land trust consent.
  • Easement Section III.A:  The land trust may make rules — such as dogs, leashes, bikes — if those rules are not inconsistent with any town rules. 
  • The land trust shall in no way interfere with snowmobile use, governed by the Town.
  • The land trust shall in no way interfere with ATV use, governed by the Town.
  • The land trust’s trails on the opposite side of Elmwood Road have three separate deeds that prohibit bicycles, thus bicycle use on the town-owned woodlot is not likely to be significant, if allowed at all.
  • Bicycle use of the sharp curves of Elmwood Road (to bypass RRCT’s existing trails) would create safety issues. 
  • RRCT plans to build off-road trail-head parking on a parcel already owned by RRCT on Elmwood Road — located at the safest location on this stretch of road, getting all trail users off road shoulders.
  • The town may close the existing parking area (clean fill area) located on a sharp curve, or the town may keep it open for hunters or others, at the Town’s sole authority.

Proposed Elmwood Road woodlot conservation easement PDF

Map illustrating two Warrant Articles on two town-owned woodlots. (same map as jpg below)

Town of North Yarmouth, Town Meeting, Warrant re Knight’s Pond Expansion – June 17, 2024 (Monday) at 6:30pm

The North Yarmouth Select Board and the North Yarmouth Parks Committee propose to acquire a 5.9-acre parcel from Ben Grover with frontage on Knight’s Pond, allowing the completion of a trail loop around the pond. This proposal will be on the June 17, 2024, Town Meeting Warrant. Vote Yes!

Separately, with no need for town meeting action, Ben Grover plans the construction of a trail on land previously donated to the Town as part of the Wildlife Lane subdivision.

PDF map showing the town warrant parcel and planned trail construction. (same map as jpg below).

Wescustogo Treks: RRCT’s planned River Elf Trail (New Gloucester), June 22, 2024 (Saturday) at 10am – Registration Required

Royal River Conservation Trust is pleased to host a series of three Wabanaki-led hikes, intended for indigenous and non-indigenous people alike, designed to explore and acknowledge the rich history of Native American culture along the Royal River (Wescustogo) and in Maine as a whole.

The third of three treks will take place Saturday June 22nd at 10am at RRCT’s planned River Elf Trail on Cobb’s Bridge Road on the Royal River (Wescustogo) in New Gloucester. RRCT acquired trail rights in 2024 but has not yet built the trail. Thus the 2024 trek will be off-trail through farm fields and mature open woods. Off-trail trekking requires sturdy footwear and some agility, though the woods are mature and open. Parking will be on one side of narrow road shoulders of Cobb’s Bridge Road, a few thousand feet north (upriver toward Auburn) from the intersection of Meadow Lane and Cobb’s Bridge Road.

Registration is required. Registration and more event information is here.

Get Out! Nature Walks: Thayer Brook Preserve, June 26, 2024, (Wednesday) at 2pm

Royal River Conservation Trust and Chebeague and Cumberland Land Trust partner in sponsoring Get Out! Nature Walks. Our June event in Gray is also sponsored by Presumpscot Regional Land Trust. These walks are led by a Maine Master Naturalist or some other skilled and knowledgeable volunteer. Details and schedule here.

Our June 26, 2024, event is at Thayer Brook Preserve in Gray! Click above for details.

Annual Meeting of the Members, Tuesday, September 24, 2024

RRCT’s Annual Meeting is typically business-like, electing Directors and conducting other necessary business. Voting rights extend to all recent donors. This year’s meeting will be Tuesday, September 24, 2024, at 5:30 pm at Yarmouth’s American Legion Log Cabin (196 Main Street.) Stay tuned for more details!

13th Annual Pisgah Hill Preserve Full Moon Trek: TBD, 2025 – Registration Requested

Click here for details on our planned 2025 Full Moon Trek. Free and welcoming, as we celebrate our conservation successes in the watershed.

RRCT Wescustogo Paddle: TBD, 2025 – Registration Required

This event is free and welcoming, as we celebrate our conservation successes in the watershed alongside local Wabanaki leaders.

Join us for an 8-mile river paddling trip from Wescustogo Park in North Yarmouth to East Elm Street in Yarmouth, on typically on a Friday afternoon in May, exact date TBD, 2025.

Event details and RSVPs will be here as the date approaches.