Would you believe that dozens of people each day were out on the West River Trail? Windham Regional Commission has expanded its pedestrian count program to the winter months, and recent data both surprised and pleased us. Counts on the West River Trail in Brattleboro from December 11, 2018 through New Year’s Day 2019 were only about 15 percent lower than the long term average for non-winter months. It was probably the short days as much as, if not more so, than the cold though that kept people from getting out. We came to this conclusion because while weekday counts for that period were lower than average, weekend counts, when people are more likely to have an opportunity to get out during daylight hours, were exactly the same as the long term average for data recorded in spring, summer, and fall. On Christmas Day we recorded 110 “trips” on our West River Trail counter. A “trip” is one person passing in one direction on the trail. At a place like the West River Trail where most people go out and back, we can estimate the number of persons using the trail to be about half the number of trips. This would mean about 55 people were out on the West River Trail on Christmas Day, about 50 on New Year’s Eve day, and about 68—our highest daily number—on December 29.
LONDONDERRY — Join the Green Mountain Club and explore the West River Trail on Saturday, Feb.16, 2019. Participants are meeting 1 p.m. in the old railroad depot building at the corner of Rt 100 and West River Street in South Londonderry, then carpooling to the trail head. Depending on snow cover, snowshoe or hike with traction on the level railroad bed of the old West River Railroad on this northernmost part of the West River Trail. This is an easy, beginner hike. RSVP to Dale Malekoff at 802-824-5030 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Save the dates! The Friends of the West River Trail, Weston Historical Society & The Londonderry Arts and Historical Society present:
Freedom & Unity: The Vermont Movie, the first-ever documentary series about Vermont. All six chapters will be shown at the South Londonderry Railroad Depot; the first two episodes this Fall and the remaining chapters in 2019.
Part 1: “A Very New Idea”
Thursday, Nov. 15
Explores the roots from which the future state of Vermont grew, from Samuel Champlain to the Civil War.
Part 2: “Under the Surface”
Thursday, Nov. 29
Yes, quarrying, but also about social movements that have belied Vermont’s bucolic image.
South Londonderry Railroad Depot Route 100
Admission free; donations appreciated. For more information on the movie visit the Vermont Movie website.
On November 8, Jeff Nugent, a former volunteer with the U.S. National Park Service and presently a specialist with the Windham Regional Commission, will present “Grand Teton National Park: A Geographic Portrait” accompanied by beautiful images of this iconic locale.
Thursday, Nov. 8, 7 PM
South Londonderry RR Depot
Free Admission, donations appreciated
Save the Date! West River Trail Volunteer Work Day.
Saturday, October 20 (with rain date Sunday, Oct 21).
Time: probably 9 AM to 1 PM.
We will put in a post, put trail markers along the trail, clear ditches, do some mowing. Stay tuned for more info as the date gets closer. Hope you can join us!
RIVERSTONE PRESERVE TRAIL CLOSURE UPDATE! The West River Trail will be open again from the Marina trail head to the Rice Farm Rd trail head, starting Wednesday, Sept 5, for the rest of the week and until further notice. The trails on the Riverstone Preserve will be closed this Wednesday and Thursday, due to the invasive plant treatment. There will be signage explaining which trails are closed.
There will most likely be more trail closures announced during the fall for this purpose.
Thank you for your patience!
RIVERSTONE PRESERVE TRAIL CLOSURE
The Friends of the West River Trail received a grant from the USDA and have hired Long View Forest, Inc to treat Bittersweet, Multiflora Rose, Black Swallowort, Buckthorn, Japanese Barberry (and possibly a few others).
Monday, Sept 3 and Tuesday, Sept 4 the Riverstone Preserve portion of the West River Trail will be closed for treatment on invasive plants. The main West River Trail will be closed where it passes along the Riverstone Preserve. Trails within the Riverstone Preserve will be closed. There will be signs at the trailheads at the Marina and Rice Farm Road, and at either end of the section of the Main trail that will be closed. We are sorry for the inconvenience.
On Tuesday, May 15, at 7 pm, the Friends of the West River Trail will present “The 39 Steps” a Hitchcock classic at the South Londonderry Depot.
Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and light refreshments will be served.
South Londonderry Depot, 34 River St., South Londonderry, VT.
Something very cool is happening on the West River this month! Join a lantern lit paddle at the confluence of the West and Connecticut Rivers or come watch from the riverside. The Lantern Paddle is part of an extensive program of community events around the Confluence Project. Don’t miss out on this joyful parade of lanterns and luminaries to celebrate our rivers on Friday, May 25, 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm.
For details and to register for lantern making workshops and the Lantern Paddle, visit the Vermont Performance Lab events webpage. This flotilla will incorporate the handmade lanterns made by the community at workshops with artist Gowri Savoor on May 15, May 17 and May 19. Sign up for lantern making workshops at the River Gallery School. Participants are encouraged to join the paddle on land or water.
Co-organized by the Vermont Performance Lab and the Connecticut River Conservancy.
Sponsored by The Marina Restaurant & co-sponsored by the Vermont Canoe Touring Center.
From the Vermont Performance Lab website: The Confluence Project is an ambitious experiment in creative place-making that demonstrates an in-depth model for bringing arts, youth, community groups, regional planners and educational institutions to the civic dialogue table to take an interdisciplinary approach to the study of watersheds.
The Southern Section of the West River Trail is emerging from the grip of winter’s snow and ice. Though patches of snow still hug the trail, the muddy sections are a sure sign of early spring. Alongside the trail, hunks of ice cling to the banks of the West River, but the geese have returned to swim in the open waters. The rock cliffs are drenched with spring melt, the few remaining icicles disappearing rapidly, wildflowers to follow soon.