GPMCT worked with Lucerne-in-Maine Village in spring 2005 to place permanent conservation easements on village-owned properties on and near Phillips Lake – at the headwaters of the Orland River and Union River Watersheds. These easements protect Sunset Ledge, six islands in Phillips Lake and a wooded 10-acre strip of land behind Camp Capella. GPMCT’s easement protects six islands at the south end of Phillips Lake, ranging from less than one acre to four acres in size: Shelter, Patmos, Treasure, Fortune, Moccasin and Mystery islands. These undeveloped islands are forested and rocky; day use only, no camping or open fires. Islands can be explored via the public boat launch at the end of Poplar Road.
Barrett-King & Merrill Easements
In 2000, GPMCT partnered with neighboring Blue Hill Heritage Trust to help them protect the former Nowick Farm, 136 acres of scenic fields and woods sweeping along Rte. 15 on the Orland/Penobscot line. GPMCT assisted BHHT in raising the money to purchase development rights on this piece of rich farmland, which was then purchased by organic farmers Jo Barrett and Dennis King of King Hill Farm in Penobscot. GPMCT is the third-party holder/enforcer on the conservation easement, which protects this farm from subdivision and commercial development and keeps it available for agricultural and forestry use in perpetuity.
In 2007, neighbor Ray Merrill donated a similar easement conserving 6.5 acres of adjacent blueberry fields. GPMCT is also the third-party holder on this easement.
These two properties represent some of Hancock County’s best agricultural soils, and are included in more than 1,600 acres protected by BHHT on the Front Ridge (Rte. 15) corridor.
The Linscott Easement protects 72 forested acres located south of Rocky Pond in East Orland. This young woodland hosts a plethora of vernal pools – springtime breeding areas critical for wood frogs and spotted salamanders. At least two of these pools qualify as State Significant. The Linscott family worked with GPMCT in 2008 to protect their important wildlife habitat and working forest from future subdivision and commercial or residential development.