Lobster Cove Meadow, Boothbay Harbor
Two days after Christmas found us exploring the trails of the Lobster Cove Meadow Preserve, one of the many properties under the stewardship of the Boothbay Region Land Trust.
The winter solstice has come and gone but the sun remains pretty much at its lowest point in the sky. We arrived at the preserve shortly before 11 a.m. The mercury had climbed to 50 degrees, although it felt much cooler in the shade of the trees.
The main trail just to the left of the kiosk carried us downhill into the woods; the path was damp in places with patches of melting snow here and there. There are several trails to enjoy, all of which loop around and intersect with one another. We followed the blue blazed path, which is well-marked and easily traversed.
Patches of ice along the way made for challenging walking here and there. I nearly lost my footing several times and wished I’d thought to carry along a set of stabilizers to slip over my boots. The ice certainly didn’t slow down Bo, our dog, who raced ahead as far as his leash would stretch. The path soon led us to a broad, sunlit meadow bordered on one side by towering northern pines and the partially frozen marsh on other. The sky above was cloudless as far as the eye could see and robin-egg blue.
Along the way we met a woman out enjoying the warm weather with her two poodles. The path soon carried us to a wider ATV trail that runs about a mile southward. An overnight rainstorm followed by the balmy temperatures had transformed it to a sheet of slick ice. The ATV trail runs parallel to a vast marsh fed by Meadow Brook, also referred to as Meadow Cove Creek, which spills into Lewis Cove.
Around 1880, the brook was dammed, forming a large lake where ice was cut into blocks and sold. The ice works continued here into the early part of the 20th century before closing. In 2007, the BRLT had the dam repaired. The ATV trail ends at the Indian Trail that carries you to another BRLT property, the Appalachee Preserve.
The BRLT purchased the 46.8 acres making up the Lobster Cove Meadow Preserve in 2002. The woods, meadow and marshland provide prime breeding grounds for migratory birds and other wildlife. We saw several excellent viewing spots overlooking the marsh and caught sight of a hawk perched high up in a tree.
Lobster Cove Meadow is on Eastern Avenue in Boothbay Harbor. From Route 27 turn onto Route 96 at the traffic signal by the Hannaford Supermarket. Drive three tenths of a mile, Eastern Avenue is on your right (we didn’t see a street sign). The preserve’s parking area is just past the Hometown Convenience store. The preserve is open to the public year-round.
To learn more about the Lobster Cove Meadow Preserve or to make a donation to the BRLT, visit www.bbrlt.org.