Trade Wind Fields Preserve
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 needlegrass, bearberry, wild indigo and sickle-leaf golden aster — are underway.
The restoration effort is a dynamic process. Please stay on designated trails and follow all property rules as outlined in the posted signage.
A portion of the property continues to be used as an airstrip. Pilots are welcome to land here but must have an approved permission-to-land slip in advance; details may be obtained by telephoning the land bank office.
- Difficulty rating: Moderate
- Trail: 1,200’ of hardened trail through oak-pitch pine woodland.
- Points of Interest: Trail arrives at viewing area with benches offering wide views of grassland
- Benches: 3
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.
- 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 for airplanes 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