About the Skiff Mountain South Preserve
The Skiff Mountain South Preserve is a magnificent 250-acre property featuring tranquil woods, inviting trails, a beaver pond, a stream, a hidden meadow, and abundant wildlife. We invite you to walk the trails (see posted map), take pictures, reflect on nature’s grandeur, and otherwise enjoy the Preserve, leaving the land as you found it.
With tremendous help from Skiff Mountain neighbors, members of the Kent and Sharon communities, and partnering conservation organizations including the Trust for Public Land and Sharon Land Trust, the Kent Land Trust purchased what is now the Skiff Mountain South Preserve from Kent School in April 2003. In 2009, several nearby properties gained permanent protection through conservation easements funded by the US Forest Service’s Forest Legacy Program, creating linkages between the Skiff Mountain South Preserve and over 7,000 acres of protected property. This regionally important conservation area, known as the Macedonia Forest Block, encompasses private parcels along with the Pond Mountain Nature Preserve, Macedonia Brook State Park, and the Appalachian Trail corridor, plus land owned by Northeast Utilities, Sharon Audubon, and the Sharon Land Trust.
The Skiff Mountain South Preserve’s linkages and its habitat diversity make the property suitable for a wide range of wildlife. Birds, in particular, are very fond of the place. Since 2001, Marvelwood School students led by Science Chair Laurie Doss have netted, banded, recorded and released birds here. Avian visitors documented to date include the great blue heron, snow goose, wood duck, broad-winged hawk, yellow-billed and black-billed cuckoo, American woodcock, scarlet tanager, winter wren, least flycatcher, worm-eating warbler, Lawrence’s warbler, blue-winged warbler, black-throated blue warbler and cerulean warbler. In 2016, the Macedonia Forest Block gained recognition as a State Important Bird Area, thanks in part to the careful research conducted by Marvelwood School.
Consistent with the mission of the Kent Land Trust, use of the Skiff Mountain South Preserve is limited to noncommercial, passive recreational activities. For more information about the property please contact the Kent Land Trust at (860) 488-9185 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Distance: Woodcock Trail, 0.5 mi; Cerulean Warbler Loop Trail, 1.3 mi; Queen of Diamonds Trail, 1.7 mi
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Recognized as a State Important Bird Area, the Skiff Mountain South Preserve holds a variety of important wildlife habitat linked to the 7,000 acres of protected property within the Macedonia Forest Block. The blue-blazed Woodcock Trail starts at Skiff Mountain Road, wraps around a beaver pond and wetlands, and connects to the orange-blazed Cerulean Warbler Loop Trail. Passing vernal pools, a seasonal stream, and a mature hardwood forest, the Cerulean Warbler Loop links to North Kent Road, then to Skiff Mountain Road and back to the beginning via a gravel drive crossing the east edge of the Marvelwood School campus. Branching south from the Cerulean Warbler Loop, the red-blazed Queen of Diamonds Trail cuts through a meadow, across a ridge-top, through a heavily forested area, and back to the meadow, with a steep descent in the middle. The short purple-blazed loop is an interpretive trail featuring information about some of the Preserve’s avian inhabitants.