Miles of trail: 1.75
Activities: Hiking, skiing, birding, fishing/hunting
We acquired the 124-acre Appleton Preserve along the Georges River in 2006 with assistance from the LMF Program (Land for Maine’s Future).
The property boasts high quality wildlife habitats along the Georges River and in its floodplain forest, forested and open wetlands, and upland conifer forests. Most of the Appleton Preserve consists of deep glaciomarine deposits of silt loam with relatively few boulders. This has allowed the natural shaping of oxbows, ravines, and gullies found throughout the property.
There are more than 300 species of vascular plants in seven different natural community types. The community type that occupies the largest area on the property is the Hemlock Forest, which includes small patches of Red Maple Sensitive Fern Swamp in low-lying areas mostly associated with the riparian zone. The plant diversity at Appleton Preserve is particularly high because of the mesic soils, heterogeneity of habitats, and contrast in disturbance patterns, from spring flooding to agriculture to topsoil removal. The primary management objective is to conserve its exemplary natural communities.
Demonstration Forest Management Tour
A secondary management objective is to demonstrate responsible and sustainable forest management techniques and educate the public about them. We have created a self-guided forestry management trail on site, and a printable brochure. Take this along on your next visit to learn about the demonstration forest.
The Appleton Preserve is open to the public for day-use only; no overnight camping is allowed. Hunting is permitted with prior permission. A one-mile trail/woods road takes visitors along the length of the property. In addition, there is a 3/4 mile forestry interpretive loop trail.
Download a printable map.
Directions to the Property
From the intersection of Routes 131 and 105 (Camden Road) in Appleton, go east on Route 105 for ½ mile. Parking for the Appleton Preserve is available at the ME Inland Fisheries & Wildlife gravel lot on the right, just before the bridge across the Georges River (see map). Please do not park in the Blue Crow Studio driveway or use it as a turnaround!