From the Fall 2015 WCT Newsletter:
Ten thousand steps – that’s what one participant’s pedometer recorded on September 12 at the end of the Trust’s 9th Annual Guided Walk that began and ended at the LeCount’s Hollow Beach parking lot. The 4 mile walk included talks at the start and at five points along the route by South Wellfleet historian Pam Tice, and by Trustees Dennis O’Connell, Bill Iacuessa, Dwight Estey, Don Palladino, and Mary Rogers.
Around seventy-five enthusiastic walkers gathered at 9 a.m. on a perfect day in the parking lot where President Dennis O’Connell and Walk Director Bill Iacuessa welcomed everyone and introduced the speakers. Mary Rogers discussed the original Maguire co”ages which were located at the beach. Pam Tice gave history of the brief-lived German glider school and Cook’s Camp to the south of the area.
The group headed up Ocean View Drive and into the woods along a trail that comes out onto the old Buffum Road, the way into Wellfleet-by-the-Sea before Ocean View Drive was built. The first stop was at a Modernist house, designed by Olaf Hammerstrom around a preexisting dwelling. There the group learned about the old road, about the creation of Ocean View Drive, and about the Surf Side Colony which they had passed on the way into the woods.
From there, the walkers went deep into the wood on a trail known as the “Gauntlet,” which runs roughly parallel to Ocean View Drive. Dwight Estey expanded upon the various colorful names given to different sections of the Gauntlet according to their terrain. The group proceeded west to the outskirts of the WCT Clover Trail. The walkers followed the railroad bed to LeCount Hollow Road, passed through the Rail Trail parking area and crossed Blackfish Creek, walking along the bike trail. From a vantage point high above the east side of Blackfish Creek, Pam Tice gave background on the early South Wellfleet General Store and Post Office, and Don Palladino discussed Blackfish Creek.
The group followed an old section of the Old King’s Highway to Marconi Wireless Road. In front of the newly rebuilt home of Bill Carlson and Lonni Briggs on Marconi Wireless Road, Dennis O’Connell explained their conservation restriction (CR), and Bill Iacuessa discussed the Marconi Station, which was located on top of the dune at the end of the sand road. This was the last stop before returning to the starting point, LeCount’s Hollow Beach parking lot. The total walk took about two and a half hours at a leisurely pace.
Participants were delighted with the walk which opened up new territory to many from Wellfleet and from far away. Come back again next year. We’re already making plans for our 10th Annual Guided Walk in Wellfleet on the Saturday after Labor Day.
From the Spring 2014 WCT Newsletter:
The Walker property consists of 8.3 acres of wooded slopes, a maple swamp, and a small pond, which is a certified vernal pool. The conservation plan for this property was completed in April 2012, and walking trails (approximately 0.6 miles in length) are now open to the public. We hope you will explore this new trail!
In spring this trail comes alive with music, color, and fragrance: the gentle chorus of spring peepers, the rhythmic bass of bullfrogs, the sweet scent of blackberry blossoms, the lime-green buds of swamp maples, the lavender blossoms of wild phlox, and the black and orange mosaic of monarch wings covering milkweed stalks. On the evening following the first warm rain of spring, you might even catch a glimpse of mole salamanders gathering at the vernal pool to breed and lay their eggs.
In fact, it is a festival of life and feast for the senses in all seasons. WCT trustee Dwight Estey was so captivated that he was inspired to compose poetry, which will be published on the WCT website. Here is a sample of his verses:
Through trees below, water I saw Glassy, dark with black reflection The Walker Pond below my perch Mirrored nature’s perfection.
Browns, tans and yellows shimmered And upon still waters seemed Like jewels laid out before me A view for kings and queens.
– Dwight E. Estey From Ode to a High Bench, A Poet’s Walk
Will the muses also fill you with creative spirit when you visit the Walker Conservation Land and Trails? If they do, we want to hear about it! You are invited to share your poetry, photography, and artwork with us. Once again, we express our deepest gratitude to the Walker family for working with WCT to preserve this gem.
Access to the new trail is next to 70 Coles Neck Road and marked with a sign.