The Gibson Preserve, 165 wild acres on the St. George River in Searsmont, is owned and managed by the Georges River Land Trust. The Preserve has a 3.9-mile trail network with great summer hiking and winter cross-country skiing and snowshoeing opportunities. From the north parking lot, there is a 5-foot wide, 0.4 mile lollipop loop with a compacted gravel surface that is suitable for wheelchairs and strollers.
The property supports spruce-fir forest, meadows, and fields and has over one mile of frontage on the St. George River. The forest here is relatively even-aged and is estimated to be about 40-50 years old. The large softwood stumps are evidence of past harvesting. A natural resources inventory found five amphibians, three reptiles, 59 birds, and 14 mammal species. The Gibson Preserve is managed for high quality wildlife habitat.
Read about MTF Accessibility Ambassador Enock Glidden's visit to the Gibson Preserve using his wheelchair at MTF Stories.
The Gibson Preserve is open to the public for day-use only; no overnight camping is allowed. Hunting is NOT permitted.
Leashed dogs are permitted. Please clean up after your pet!
Visit Georges River Land Trust online for more information or contact:
The Gibson Preserve is bisected by the St. George River and there are trails on each portion of the property. Currently, though, there is no simple way for visitors to get from one side of the river to the other. Rest assured, we are working on this from many different angles. Until then….
The north side of the property can be accessed from a parking lot off ME Route 173 (Woodmans Mill Road) in Searsmont. From the center of Searsmont (Fraternity Village Store), head west on ME Route 173. Travel 3 miles to the parking lot on the left. This parking lot has two reserved accessible spaces.
A 15-acre parcel of land hosts the south side access point to the Georges Highland Path at the end of Cedar Lane in Appleton. From the center of Searsmont (Fraternity Village Store), head west on Route 173 (Woodmans Mill Road). Travel 3.1 miles to West Appleton Road and turn left. Continue for 1.1 miles and turn left onto Cedar Lane. Park at the end of the road and walk to the kiosk at the beginning of the trail.
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