The Rensselaer Land Trust (RLT) has permanently protected a 30-acre property in Stephentown, and will open it to the public as the Robert Ingalls Preserve. Black Brook, a native brook trout spawning stream, flows through a scenic ravine on the forested preserve. The Robert Ingalls Preserve will be open for catch and release fishing, hiking, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, birding, and environmental education. RLT plans to improve a parking area, lay out formal trails, and install a kiosk and interpretive trail signs. RLT will offer a guided snowshoe hike/ski at the Preserve in March. The property, located at the intersection of Horse Heaven and Garfield Roads, was brought to the attention of RLT by a neighbor. RLT then negotiated a donation of the property, and costs associated with closing and clean-up are being donated by members of RLT and the local community. The Robert Ingalls Preserve is named in memory of RLT's Vice President and long time Board of Directors member, who passed away in November.
The Preserve is located on the Rensselaer Plateau, one of RLT's priority areas in for land conservation in Rensselaer County. The Rensselaer Plateau's large forests blocks provide wildlife habitat, protect water quality, offer outdoor recreation, and support local economic activity. "The successful protection of the Robert Ingalls Preserve is the result of the former landowner, community residents, and RLT working together. Establishment of the Robert Ingalls Preserve offers the public additional access to open space and additional opportunities for outdoor activities," said Nick Conrad, RLT President.
RLT will have several work days in 2011 for the clean-up, to create the trails, improve the parking area and install the kiosk and signage. We welcome your help on these work days. Please check our website again for specific dates and times for the work days.