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Trade Wind Fields Preserve


71.8 acres


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. Important sandplain pollinator species such as wavy-leaf milkweed and butterfly weed are scattered throughout the grassland.  Ongoing rescue efforts for the sandplain species continue.  

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.


Universal Access

  • 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.

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 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

Trail / Property Map