From 1908 to 1953 the Vineyard Ice Company operated an ice-harvesting business in this freshwater pond, complete with gantries and conveyor belts and storehouses. Its industrial era now behind it, this kettle pond and its surrounding woodlands are today quiet and scenic. Unlike most Vineyard swimming spots, this property lacks a beach; it is therefore a place less suited to families with children and more suited to experienced swimmers who wish to exercise — families will find Seth’s Pond and other nearby beaches to be more attractive. Because wading and jumping aren’t appropriate here — swimmers enter the pond by slipping off a designated perch directly into five feet of water — visitors will find this preserve, supervised as it is by summer rangers, to be rather sedate.
Begin at the intersection of the State Road and the upper Lambert’s Cove Road (in West Tisbury). Proceed up the Lambert’s Cove Road 0.6 miles and turn right into trailhead. For visitors 70 years and older who wish to arrive closer: begin at the intersection of the Lambert’s Cove Road and Manaquayak Road and travel 0.5 miles on the Manaquayak Road; turn right onto Wintergreen Lane and find the land bank trailhead on the left at the bottom of the hill. Parking and access for all visitors is limited and some may have to be turned away; please have an alternative destination in mind if you are planning a trip to this property.
The pond at the preserve was referred to as Manaquayak by the Wampanoags, derived from Nan-nau-wiy-ack that translates to “safe or secure place” later it was called Ice House Pond and was the site of the Vineyard Ice Company; the ice cut from the pond was considered some of the best ice on the island due to its clarity and lack of debris, as the depth of the pond allowed ice to form well above the vegetation and sediment in the water.