Tucker Mountain Town Forest
Newbury residents voted for a second time to approve the Tucker Mountain land acquisition. It was a large turnout, with approximately 300 residents voting. Both sides were well supported, but the yes votes clearly carried it with approximately the same ratios as the original vote.
What is the Tucker Mountain-Newbury Town Forest Project? The Town of Newbury has been offered two parcels of 142 acres and 493 acres on both sides of Tucker Mountain Road, including the tops of Tucker and Woodchuck Mountains, from members of the Leach family at a steeply discounted price.
Why should the Town buy Tucker Mountain? Public ownership means the Town will take ownership of and responsibility for a wonderful, iconic asset.Town ownership will guarantee public access to the land for future generations. The town will be able to make decisions about its use and stewardship. If the Town does not acquire the properties, they will be sold on the open market and future owners may not allow, as the Leaches have, public access in the forest and to the top of Tucker Mountain.
Check back on this site often to find ways in which you can be involved in helping with this project!
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Tucker Mountain and the forestland around it has been a popular place for residents of Newbury for a long time. The open meadow top of Tucker Mountain provides long distance views in almost all directions and has been the destination for an annual visit by Newbury Elementary School students and teachers for many years. The two properties’ 635 acres offer recreational opportunities such as hunting, picnicking, hiking, bird-watching, snowshoeing, and back country skiing. Several schools attended by Newbury boys and girls would have an outstanding natural laboratory for learning about plants, wildlife, water resources, and forest management. The land is threaded by headwaters streams and the West Branch of the Halls Brook, with its excellent brook trout habitat. Wetlands, vernal pools with frogs and salamanders, many types of plants and wildlife – all help make the proposed Tucker Mountain-Newbury Town Forest one of Newbury’s most important tracts of land.
- Tucker Mountain has long been a popular recreational destination for residents of and visitors to Newbury. All students from Newbury Elementary School make an annual trip to the top of Tucker Mountain.
- Town ownership, with a supportive Conservation Commission and “Friends” group to help manage the property, would provide permanent public access for diverse recreational and educational activities, and present an opportunity for improved access, management, and stewardship of the properties’ natural resources – while also generating revenue from timber harvesting, firewood, and sugaring.
- Public recreation and scenic views
- Productive timber land and sugar bush
- Water resources and aquatic habitat: West Branch of Halls Brook and tributaries, two vernal pools, and Meadow Brook
- Wetlands and natural communities: beaver pond wetland complex, Red Spruce-Cinnamon Fern Swamp, and Red Maple –Black Ash Seepage Swamp, among others
- Newbury Elementary School trips and special projects?
- Oxbow High School/River Bend Career & Technical Center trips & projects?
Q&As to help answer questions you may have are located here – Tucker-Mt.-TF-Q&A-PR-Release
The Interim Management Plan is located here – Interim Mgmnt Plan
Reports & Documents: