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   18. TRADE WIND FIELDS PRESERVE

Size
71.8 acres

 

Description                                                                                                                               
Here is the classic sandplain grassland habitat, whose survival in this location was

just a matter of good fortune: the land was used for decades as a grass-strip airport

and the regular mowing and rolling that accompanied that use prevented the land's succession into woodland.  Ongoing rescue efforts for the sandplain species --- purple tiger beetle, sandplain blue-eyed grass, purple needle grass, bearberry, wild indigo and sickle-leaf golden aster --- are underway                                                                              

The greatest threat to the rescue zone is boots and shoes.  Animals,

such as dogs, pose little or no threat, as paws tread rather lightly on

the surface of the land (unless they dig holes --- owners are asked to

call their dogs back if they see them plowing up the land). Hikers

themselves are asked to limit their own exercise to the existing marked trails on the zone's perimenter; these trails have been sited so as to allow maximum human freedom to ramble on the preserve while

permitting sandplain species to continue to exist. 

                                       

A portion of the property continues to be used as an airstrip but landings

are few.  Pilots are welcome to land here but must receive in advance a

permission - to - land slip; details may be obtained by telephoning

the land bank office.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        

Uses
Nature study, hiking, picnicking, mountain-biking, horseback-riding, dog-walking, scenic vista, universal access (difficult terrain).

Access
Trailhead and bicycle rack located on-site. Start at the intersection of the County, Barnes and Wing Roads. Travel on the County Road toward Edgartown; after 0.5 miles, turn left into trailhead driveway.

Historical Highlights

 

  • in the 1800s, the preserve was a successful dairy farm run by the Chase family; this property also included part of the Farm Neck golf course

 

  • in 1930 the Chase family sold the farm to Antone Sanchos, who started the first Vineyard repair shop forairplanes and opened up one of the fields for airplanes; in the 1950s retired United States Air Force Captain Carolyn Cullen and Rachel William formed the Trade Wind Flying Service here


Trail / Property Map

Click to View

Features

biking hiking picnicing mountain bikinghorseback riding dog walking