Brave Boat Headwaters is all about connections



Portsmouth Herald encourages "Vote Yes on 2"

click here for full editorial 11/2/15


A Wet Walk in the Woods with Deborah McDermott









photo credit:Deb Cram

October 4th- The rain was coming down in buckets but that was of little concern to Portsmouth Herald reporter Deborah McDermott.  We walked and talked about what has come before on this land and what promises to come to be if funding can be secured for the Brave Boat Headwaters Preserve.  Read more here.

Public Speaks up for Brave Boat Headwaters Preserve

Thank you to all who packed Town Hall to ask the Town of Kittery to sell a bond to help create the Brave Boat Headwaters Preserve. Your swell of support made an important difference! Watch members of the community make a persuasive case for the value of this project (start at 28:55; end at 58:55).

The Town Council voted 6:1 in favor of letting the voters decide whether to aid the permanent protection of The Headwaters with a $275,000 bond.We are further thrilled that in a 7:0 vote, the Town Council agreed to allocate $75,000 in Open Space funds for the conservation of this land. We are heartened and grateful! And there is still much work ahead of us, so we ask for your continued, active support for this project.

Brave Boat Headwaters will

Here's how you can help:

Vote Yes on #2 on November 3rd to make Brave Boat Headwaters a reality. 

Help spread the word about the value of this preserve to our community:   

  • provide a place for outdoor recreation.
  • create opportunities for nature-based education. 
  • preserve the scenic views between Brave Boat Harbor and Bartlett Roads.
  • protect important habitat for rare and endangered wildlife.
  • safeguard the quality of water flowing into Brave Boat Harbor.

Big Step Forward for Brave Boat Headwaters

At the beginning of February, KLT closed on 43 acres of woodland and farm fields off Bartlett Road. The Sawyer and Coggeshall families donated the land, which has been owned by the family since the 1920's.
William Sawyer, who just turned 82, reminisced about the land he grew up on while signing the legal papers for the agreement. “The day I was born in 1933, my mother and father traveled to York Hospital from the farm in a horse drawn pung, which is a winter sleigh.” 
The permanent protection of the land represents a major addition to the overall effort to protect Brave Boat Headwaters, a 150-acre block of valuable woodlands and wetlands between Bartlett Road and Route 103.  

Headway on Brave Boat Headwaters

KLT is thrilled to be awarded $400,000 from the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA) in support of the Brave Boat Headwaters conservation project. This grant is a significant step forward in the goal of protecting 150 acres along scenic Route 103 that includes critical wetlands, wildlife habitat, historic sites, and land that protects water quality of the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge.   

“We are excited to learn of this important award for The Headwaters,” says Christine Bennett. “ It was a very competitive grant and speaks volumes to the importance of our efforts to protect water quality and habitat in this part of Kittery, where we still have large blocks of unfragmented woodlands and a healthy ecosystem.

KLT is conserving seven parcels of abutting land that together form the Brave Boat Headwaters Project. A centerpiece of the project is the 60-acre parcel on Brave Boat Harbor Road that KLT bought last fall from a developer who had plans for a 27-lot subdivision. KLT is now focused on securing funds to pay off its  debt and raising a total of 1.9 million to permanently protect the water and habitat of these ecologically rich and historically significant lands.  

Brave Boat Headwaters contains traces of early settlements in Kittery and marks the site of an historic homestead. Open fields, woodlands, and wetlands provide habitat for rare plants like pink lady slippers and wild cranberry and for endangered species such as Blanding Turtles and Ribbon snakes. Vernal pools allow wood frogs and blue-spotted salamanders to thrive, while river otters move from Brave Boat Harbor’s estuary to freshwater ponds further inland. Once protected, the conservation land will help ensure that clean water will always flow into the Brave Boat Harbor estuary.    

Brave Boat Headwaters will also create a critical connection between KLT’s 170-acre Norton Preserve and the Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge, filling an important hole in the Mt Agamenticus to the Sea (MtA2C) vision of a connected corridor of land from the summit of the mountain to the coast.  The land trust plans to encourage a wide range of recreation and education activities on the property once it is fully protected, making the project important not just for water and wildlife, but for people and the community as well.

KLT Closes on 60-Acre Parcel

Kittery Land Trust is happy to announce it has closed on the purchase of a 60-acre parcel of land on Brave Boat Harbor Road. We thank early, passionate supporters of this project. We are excited to have reached this milestone but are mindful of all the work ahead. We must now ensure funding to pay back our 1.34 million dollar low-interest “mortgage,” which covers the purchase and associated costs of this project.

In the next few months, KLT is focused on securing larger funding through federal grants and through Land for Maine’s Future on the state level. Later in 2014, KLT will run a campaign for private dollars. Permanent protection of this land is only guaranteed when the loan has been paid back in full.

This complex project aims for a large reward. If we are successful, we will not only have saved these 60-acres from a 27-lot cluster development but will also be able to include it in an approximate 150-acre conservation project for the area that will extend from Rachel Carson National Wildlife Refuge through KLT’s Norton Preserve. This will then be a substantial conservation corridor in Kittery.







Brave Boat Headwaters in the News

(Portsmouth Herald)
Kittery to host talk on getting kids outside

(Portsmouth Herald)
Conservation land becomes classroom

(Portsmouth Herald)
Kittery Land Trust seeks funds to complete Brave Boat project

(Portsmouth Herald)
Land for Maine’s Future freeze hits Kittery project

(Portsmouth Herald)
We are confident in KLT's abilities

(Portsmouth Herald)
Kittery Land Trust to buy conservation land for $1.34 million

(Portsmouth Herald)
Preservations efforts of KLT deserving of praise

(Portsmouth Herald)
Kittery Land Trust set to buy 60-acre woodland

(Portsmouth Herald)
On heals of Rustlewood Farm effort, KLT tackles Brave Boat

(Portsmouth Herald)
Purchase agreement may protect Kittery land from subdivision