Hurteau River Corridor Easement

Hurteau River Corridor Easement

Name of Project:     Hurteau River Corridor Easement???????

Location:      Fairfax, VT

River: Lamoille River

Type of Project:      River Corridor Easement

Public Access:        With permission from landowners

Date Completed:    January 2014

Size:               23.7 acres

Water Frontage:      1,900 feet

Landowner: Flora Hurteau

Funding Partners:    VT Agency of Natural Resources Ecosystem Restoration Grant Program

Property Description:      

The protected property is located between the Lamoille River and Goose Pond, and regularly floods.  It is mostly open land with shrubs and grasses.  Notably, the landowners have planted many Black Walnut trees throughout the property, from which they harvest the walnuts.  There is a small patch of Silver Maple Ostrich Fern Floodplain forest, but most of the river frontage has no vegetated buffer, a condition the River Corridor Easement will help change.  River bank erosion along the Lamoille River is active.

Project Background: 

This project came about as a direct result of the Central Vermont Public Service Corps (now Green Mountain Power) relicensing of the hydro dam on the Lamoille River in Fairfax.  The state required a study be done to assess the mitigation potentials along the Lamoille, to offset the impacts of the dam on the river ecosystem.  The study was conducted, and it funded the identification and outreach of key parcels that could have enhanced buffer protections.

With funding from the Ecosystem Restoration Program and the Vermont Community Foundation’s Lake Champlain Tributaries Restoration Fund (established by the same FERC relicensing requirement that also funded the above mentioned study) Vermont River Conservancy was able to secure a full River Corridor Easement on the Hurteau’s land on the Lamoille River, with considerable frontage on Goose Pond.

The Hurteau’s will informally allow neighbors to continue fishing and hunting at Goose Pond, and will block off the access road to motorized vehicles to allow the vegetation a chance to grow.

Directions:

From Highway 89, take Exit 11 toward State Route 117/Richmond/Williston.  Turn right onto US-2 W, and take the first right onto VT-117 W.  After about five miles, take a right onto Sandhill Road. After two miles, veer left onto VT-15 W. Take the second right onto VT-128 N. After 11.5 miles, turn right onto McNall Road, and veer right onto VT-104 S. Follow for one mile, then turn left on River Road.  After 360 feet, turn right onto Goose Pond Road and follow for 2.5 miles.  The entrance to the property is located on the right, just past Settlement Road at 569 Goose Pond Road.

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