West Leb End of the MRG

The West Lebanon end of the MRG makes use of a path between the Powerhouse Mall and Riverside Community Park.  Round-trip,the walk is less than a mile, my kind of challenge!

The path begins at the gazebo on the east end of the Powerhouse Mall parking lot, runs briefly along Glen Road, then heads into the woods toward the river.

Powerhouse Gazebo

Powerhouse Gazebo

Heading toward Mascoma RIver

Heading toward Mascoma RIver

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Good-bye parking lot, hello natural world.  Yes, you hear the sounds from the interstate, but you also hear the rush of river and glancing around, you start to notice the diversity of life.

Maples, oaks, crab apple, box elders, honeysuckle, blackberries, Solomon’s seal . . . I wish I had brought my field guides!

Box Elder Samaras

Box Elder Samaras

Honeysuckle

Honeysuckle

Solomon' Seal Berries

Solomon’ Seal Berries

My curiosity is piqued by these: nut or fruit?

Mystery!

Mystery!

Side Trail to River

Side Trail to River

In less than a half mile, one comes to Riverside Community Park.  Children sliding, climbing and swinging; bikers and scooters experimenting with the  ramps; freed from their gaming devices, they were playing the “old-fashioned” way.

Riverside Community Park Play Structure

Riverside Community Park Play Structure

Sliding!

Sliding!

Active Play!

Active Play!

Come explore this western end of the MRG. If you identify other trees, flowers, edibles, etc., let us know in the “Comments” and we will try to catalog the diverse life of this western end of the MRG.

MRG Update: Successes and Snags

 Lead paint on bridge over I-89 delays installation of safety rails

Lead paint on bridge over I-89 delays installation of safety rails

The Mascoma River Greenway has been a complicated project involving the City of Lebanon, the State of N.H., the Claremont Concord Railroad, and the federal government. Step by step we move forward . . .  with a few snags:

Successes:
* City of Lebanon approval of the project

* Official Abandonment and Discontinuation of the railroad tracks from mile marker 140 (eastern side of the bridge over the Mascoma River, near Timken) to Glen Road.  Thanks to the offices of Schuster, Buttrey & Wing for their efforts in preparing the 7 pounds of legal documents required!

* The incredible effort of so many volunteers clearing the tracks of brush, ties, and tracks. The “in kind” contributions have been huge!

* The MRG Capital Campaign has reached 90% of its goal thanks to the support of major donors, local businesses, house parties,individuals . . . and Girl Scouts Juniors cookie sales! Little more than $200,000 will bring us to our $2,25,700 goal.

* City engineers have completed plans for the safety rails on Slayton Hill stone arch bridge and the downtown bridge/platform over the Mascoma River.

* Work has begun on the West Lebanon side, improving the trail from the Powerhouse Mall to Riverside Park.

Snags:
* The Tunnel: Deterioration and subsequent closure of the tunnel under the Lebanon Mall and Hanover Street has obstructed the joining of the Northern Rail Trail to the MRG. Fortunately the City is conducting a visioning study for the entire downtown Lebanon, including the tunnel, and will be seeking citizen input over the next few months.

* Complications with our fencing company and lead paint on the bridge over I-89 has delayed the plan to put pedestrian/bicycle railing on the bridge.

* The trail west of the I-89 bridge is marshy and will require EPA Wetlands approval.  Application for approval has been completed and sent; we anticipate approval.

* The plan for the West Lebanon end of the trail relies on development of Iron Horse Park with a new road connecting Rt 4 to Seminary Hill. That development has been on hold for the past 2 years, and we do not yet know when it will move forward.

As we resolve the snags, weeds and brush are returning to the trail. This week, volunteers mowed and whacked weeds on the path from the Powerhouse Mall to Riverside Community Park in West Lebanon, as well as the path by the downtown Lebanon bridge over the Mascoma River. Thanks to all volunteers!
Frank Gould is looking for a few more volunteer weed-whackers.  Might you help?

Newly mowed MRG near Goss Logan

Newly mowed MRG near Goss Logan

(Thanks to Larry Kelly for the photo.)

A Job Well Done!

UVvHSTrailsCorpsLook at those satisfied smiles!  The High School Trail Corps removed 22,100 pounds of ties from the MRG today. Thanks to all for your enthusiasm and your muscle power  . . .   and on such a hot day!

We’re Almost There!

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More than 90% of our fundraising goal reached!

Way to Go H.S. Trails Corps!

MRGHSTrailsCorps

The Upper Valley High School Trails Corps spent another day on the MRG yesterday, hefting 200-pound railroad ties and clearing the greenway beyond the I-89 bridge to within a quarter mile of the Timken bridge . . . 20,300 pounds of ties went to the landfill! The Valley News was there to report on their good work: http://www.vnews.com/home/17774624-95/for-hs-trail-corps-elbow-grease-goes-a-long-way

Thanks to the High School Trail Corps!

highschooltrailcorpsThanks to the High School Trail Corps of the Upper Valley Trails Alliance, nearly 10 tons of material was removed from the MRG on Wednesday. That makes 350 feet of newly cleared trail. Way to go crew!

We’ve Reached 90% of our Goal !

694ce754Thanks to the generosity of several businesses and a number of individuals in the past few weeks, we have reached 90% of the goal of $2,255,700!  The hope is that we can reach 100% by the end of this year.

Thanks to all who have contributed to the Mascoma River Greenway!

If you have not yet contributed, you can make a tax-deductible donation by sending a check, made out to UVTA (with “Mascoma River Greenway” in the memo line) to:

Upper Valley Trails Alliance, PO Box 1215, Norwich, VT 05055

or make an online donation via our secure website, click here
We are awaiting railings to be installed on the Slayton Hill stone arch bridge and the bridge over I-89.  Stay tuned for info on our next Work Day.