Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Day 30: Inverness Glen Preserve

Forested parcel with winding brook at base of Prospect Ridge in southwest Cheshire. Adjacent to CLT's Russell Family Preserve and Naugatuck State Forest.

Size: 4.7 acres
Nearest Road: Inverness Court
Public Access: Yes
Acquisition: December 2015
Donors: Whitney & Lori Watts, and Chris Baillie

The Cheshire Land Trust acquired the Inverness Glen Preserve in December 2015, thanks to the generosity of Whitney & Lori Watts and Chris Baillie.  As of November 2016, this 4.7-acre property is CLT's most recent acquisition.

In addition to its inherent values, Inverness Glen provides a direct connection to CLT's 40-acre Russell Family Preserve to the west.  The property is also adjacent to a portion of the Naugatuck State Forest to the southwest, and to residential lots along Inverness Court to the north and south.  It lies at the base of Prospect Ridge near the ridge's southern end.  This acquisition provides the potential for additional public access to the Quinnipiac Blue Trail, which runs along the ridge and through a portion of the Russell Family Preserve.

The CLT land has a narrow frontage along Inverness Court where an unnamed stream cuts through a small ravine and crosses under the road on its decent towards Willow Brook. 

The western portion of Inverness Glen slopes upwards, first gently, then more steeply where it joins the Russell Family Preserve. A portion contains sloped wetlands, and is somewhat rocky. The entire property is dominated by mixed hardwoods, especially oak, maple, tulip poplar, and ash. The wetland areas contain some spicebush; Christmas fern is scattered throughout the forest floor. Some of the oak and tulip poplars in the western portion of the parcel are rather large. Part of the property has evidence of a historic micro-burst or wind storm that blew down several mature trees, up-rooting them. The resulting deadwood, or “coarse woody debris” can be valuable for small mammal and amphibian habitat.

Inverness Glen's acquisition is another great example of co-operative efforts (in this case, adjacent parcels owned by the State and the CLT) to protect greenspaces and greenways in Cheshire.

The Inverness Glen Preserve is open to the public but there are not currently any formal walking trails - re-establishment of a trail is planned in the future.  Our current recommendation is to appreciate the property's aesthetic qualities while passing by on Inverness Court, and keeping an eye out for wildlife making use of this preserved land.  Look for a CLT boundary marker where the stream passes under the road through a large culvert.

More about the Inverness Glen Preserve and CLT's involvement in open space preservation efforts along Prospect Ridge are on the CLT website's Prospect Ridge Preservation page.
Do you live next to or near the Inverness Glen Preserve?  Tell us about what you've seen on this land!  Please join the Cheshire Land Trust at to help us protect and maintain this and other great open space properties around Cheshire.  

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