The Hanover Conservancy honors the conservation history of Pine Park, a treasure in so many ways:
- scenic, forested Connecticut River shoreline – near downtown!
- beautiful trails, linking the campus and nearby neighborhoods
- protected corridor & shaded fish habitat for Girl Brook, one of Hanover’s most vulnerable streams
- stopover habitat for spring migrating birds
- shelter for wildlife
Here’s more from our friends at the Pine Park Association:
Pine Park is Hanover’s first natural area permanently preserved as a park and today functions as the town’s “central park” for the enjoyment of walkers, joggers, skiers and many others. TRAILS MAP
The Park’s 95 acres, acquired between 1900 and 1912, represent an important ecological resource, where riparian and forest ecosystems intersect. Accessed through the Hanover Country Club, off Rope Ferry and Occom Ridge roads north of the Dartmouth College campus, the park features a significant stand of old white pine, hemlock and hardwoods. The land is home to deer and black bear, among many other woodland animals, as well as to some unusual and endangered plant species.
Historically, the town of Hanover and Dartmouth College have shared responsibility for the management of the park, and both periodically offer labor and expertise in connection with its preservation. However, neither contributes funding directly for park maintenance or capital improvement. The park is owned by the Pine Park Association, a voluntary nonprofit that dates back to 1900, when a group of 17 local residents sought to prevent the Diamond Match Company from harvesting trees along the riverbank just north of the Ledyard Bridge.
Conditions in the park have deteriorated in recent years, in part because of high winds and storms and because of development that has contributed to notable erosion along Girl Brook. Frequent foot traffic along the brook, which crosses the park’s main path, has also contributed to the degradation of the bank and adjacent trail. A new pedestrian bridge has been built to protect the bank from further damage. (Watch the bridge being built!)
To learn more about Pine Park and contribute to the bridge project, contact the Pine Park Association. Read an essay about the park (Valley News, September, 2014). (Thanks to Kathryn Stearns for this article)