Name of Project: Enosburg Falls River Access Park
Location: Enosburg Falls
River: Missisquoi River
Type of Project: Public Access
Public Access: Yes
Date Completed: August 15, 2012
Size: 7.33 acres
Water Frontage: 1,500 feet
Landowner: Village of Enosburg Falls
Funding Partners: Vermont Housing and Conservation Board, Town of Enosburgh Conservation Fund, VT ANR Department of Fish & Wildlife, Franklin / Grand Isle Habitat for Humanity, Lake Champlain International, Lake Champlain Basin Program, Fields Pond Foundation, and 65 + community supporters.
Property Description: Many consider this property “Enosburg’s Jewel” – over 7 acres of beautiful river lands on the Missisquoi River, it is the best location from which to view the Bridge of Flowers and Light and the Falls of Enosburg. It has been a favorite fishing spot for generations, with great bedrock from which to fish the long-time small mouth bass habitat and waters stocked with Trophy Trout since 2007. The site also makes accessing the Missisquoi and portaging around the Falls easy for paddlers of the Northern Forest Canoe Trail.
Project Background: For many generations of Enosburg residents, fishing and canoe access to the Missisquoi River had been available off Duffy Hill Road. But in 2011 the land was posted and anglers and paddlers could no longer access the river. One of the people who enjoyed fishing for the “trophy trout” in that section of river called Bernie Pientka, a fisheries biologist with the state Department of Fish & Wildlife, and asked if something couldn’t be done to reopen access to the river. Pientka contacted the Vermont River Conservancy, and the conservation effort began.
After meeting with the landowner, VRC began a major campaign to raise the purchase and project costs of $189,250. That goal was reached earlier this summer, with substantial donations from the Town of Enosburgh Conservation Fund, Habitat for Humanity, and the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board (VHCB), among many others.
Habitat for Humanity will build two affordable housing units on one-acre lots on a section of the land. The house lots are located on a high field, separated by trees from the riverbank and access points.
Now that the Village of Enosburg Falls owns the conserved property, the river will permanently remain open for public enjoyment.
Directions: From Rt 108 North headed into Enosburg Falls, turn left onto Duffy Hill Rd immediately before the Bridge, and park at the pull-off a few hundred feet ahead on your right.