In November of 2013, Northeast Wilderness Trust was the recipient of a generous gift from Pat Foley of Hiram, Maine. This small town is about an hour’s drive northwest from Portland and less than an hour from the White Mountains. Ms. Foley, a retired retreat center owner who has lived on this land for about 20 years and has come to love its wild character, donated 265 acres to Northeast Wilderness Trust.
Pat has observed grey and red fox, bobcat, coyote, fisher, bear, weasel, deer, moose, bald and golden eagle, woodcock, flying squirrel, and many other animals, including turtles, snakes, frogs, small mammals, and all kinds of birds, on the property. Because she recognized its importance as wildlife habitat and felt a responsibility to protect this land from the threat of development, Pat sought out the Wilderness Trust to help her protect the land as forever wild.
The property, known as Earthrest Preserve, is part of a large block of undeveloped forest within the Sebago-Ossipee Hills region and includes a mostly forested rocky hill over 1,000 feet in elevation. Earthrest Preserve has high value for rare plants, including at least one endangered breeding population.
When asked about her reasons for choosing to donate her property, Pat says, “The Earth’s undeveloped wild land is our capital. If we maintain enough of it intact, it will provide us with interest, both now and in future years. The interest includes clean water, fresh air, sequestered carbon, a safe place for forest plants, fish, and wildlife to regenerate, a place where we humans can go to find peace and restoration. I would like to do my part to be sure these things, tangible and intangible, are available to future generations.”
We are delighted to have helped Pat protect this extraordinary place for all to enjoy, and to see that it remains wild and natural in perpetuity.
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