Conserved Land in South Hero
Over 1,500 acres of land has been conserved in South Hero, protecting farm land, natural areas, lakeshore, and scenic vistas of Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains. Below are descriptions of the properties in South Hero that South Hero Land Trust has helped to conserve.
Allenholm Farm (Conserved in 1997): Allenholm Farm is the oldest commercial apple orchard in the state, and an important local and statewide resource. The protection of Allenholm farm became the impetus for the creation of South Hero Land Trust in 1997. In partnership with the Vermont Land Trust, SHLT worked to protect this 300 acre farm, which is comprised of over 200 acres of prime and statewide soils, forested land, open meadows, and scenic ridgeline views of the Adirondacks.
Buermann Hill (Conserved in 2006): Buermann Hill consists of 33 acres of conserved farmland and woodland along Route 2. The property has exceptional scenic value, providing panoramic views of Lake Champlain and the Green Mountains for travelers heading east. Buermann Hill adds to a continuous block of conserved land extending south to the Wells Family Farm and Round Pond State Park. Thanks to generous easement donations from the Buermann family, the land and views will remain open and undeveloped. The property will continue its agricultural use for Bob and Ann Buermann's Paradise Bay Farm, a sheep and wool operation. Buermann Hill is conserved in partnership with Lake Champlain Land Trust, who holds the conservation easement on the property.
Crescent Bay Farm (Conserved in 1999): The 122 acre Crescent Bay Farm is a second-generation family farm situated on the shores of Lake Champlain. The property's prime location near the lake, combined with a height of land with spectacular views, made this parcel highly developable. The Lane family wanted to maintain the land as a working farm, and worked with the South Hero Land Trust and Vermont Land Trust to accomplish their conservation goals. The farm is now conserved through a conservation easement held by the Vermont Land Trust, which protects the farm's diverse agricultural resources, wildlife habitat, and the highest point of land in South Hero. In addition to a maple sugaring operation and raising llamas for wool, pigs for meat, and grapes for wine, the Lanes run a bed and breakfast out of their historic farmhouse.
Hackett’s Orchard (Conserved in 1999): Hackett’s Orchard is a mainstay in the South Hero community, where locals and visitors alike can find fresh apples, produce, and baked goods at their South Street farmstand. Ron and Celia Hackett worked with South Hero Land Trust and Vermont Land Trust to conserve approximately 50 acres of agricultural land, ensuring that the land will remain open in perpetuity.The property lies adjacent to Allenholm Farm (conserved by South Hero Land Trust and Vermont Land Trust in 1997), and includes ten acres of prime soils and twenty-four acres of statewide soils. While the majority of Hackett’s Orchard is dedicated to apples, other fruits and vegetables such as pumpkins, corn, and berries are raised on the farm as well. Hackett’s Orchard sees thousands of South Hero residents, visitors, and area school children annually.
Islandacres Farm (Conserved in 2008): 160 acres of farmland just to the north of the South Hero village were conserved by the Robinson family in 2008. Conservation of the property helped facilitate a generational transfer of farm ownership from Hank and Patsy Robinson to Steven and Kelly Robinson. Steve, Kelly, and their son Patrick continue to operate the dairy farm, as well as grow vegetables for sale at their farmstand. This project was partially funded by a generous grant from the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board. Productive farmland, valuable wetlands, and lakeshore have been protected by a conservation easement co-held by Vermont Land Trust and the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board.
Jackson's Point (Conserved in 2002): The Jackson’s Point (also known as Phelp’s Point) conservation project was a collaborative project of the South Hero Land Trust and Vermont Land Trust. In March of 2002, the seven families who jointly own the property protected it by donating a conservation easement on 60 acres of woodland. Jackson’s Point provides habitat for various wildlife and is adjacent to what was known as the South Hero Dunes, a series of sand formations established thousands of years ago.The State of Vermont’s Natural Heritage Program lists several threatened and endangered species in close proximity to the property. The conserved land lies near the western shore of South Hero and abuts Crescent Bay Farm, conserved by South Hero Land Trust and Vermont Land Trust in 1999.
Keeler Bay Property (Conserved in 1998 & 2001): A total of 190 acres of hay fields and forest were protected when landowner Randall Munson generously donated a conservation easement to the Lake Champlain Land Trust. Working with the Lake Champlain Land Trust and South Hero Land Trust, Randall Munson initially donated an easement on 138 acres of land in December 1998. An additional 54 were acres conserved in December 2001. In addition to the property's agricultural and scenic value, the Keeler Bay Parcel also contains several types of wildlife habitat including wetland areas, softwood cover, and several snags and cavity trees. Thanks to Randall Munson's generosity an important agricultural resource is now permanently protected.
Lakeside Jersey Farm (Conserved in 2008): South Hero Land Trust, Vermont Land Trust, and Castanea Foundation worked with Ron and Celia Hackett to conserve 92 acres of agricultural land, forestland, and farm infrastructure formerly known as the Roy Farm. The property is now owned by Ron and Celia, who are leasing the property to the Maxham family. The Maxhams use the property for cropland and raising their prize-winning Jersey herd. This project was partly funded by a generous grant from the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board and has a conservation easement that is co-held by the Vermont Land Trust and the Vermont Housing & Conservation Board.
Landon/Wells Family Farm (Project closed in 2001, Conserved in 2003): The 170 acre Landon Farm is comprised of approximately 100 acres of tillable land and 70 acres of woodland, consisting mostly of mixed hardwoods. The property was purchased in 2001 as part of the Landon Farm and Round Pond campaign, a partnership project of the South Hero Land Trust, Vermont Land Trust, Lake Champlain Land Trust, and The Nature Conservancy.
As part of the protection of the 170 acres, a Request for Proposals (RFP) was established with the intention of finding a farmer to purchase the property,
Maxham/Wilder Farm (1999): Prior to 1999, Tim and Jill Maxham operated a successful dairy operation on a rented farmstead and land. Their dream of owning a farm became a reality when Don and Helena Wilder decided to conserve and sell their historic 150-acre farm on Route 2. Tim and Jill purchased the conserved farm in 1999, and proceeded to expand their dairy operation and construct a state-of-the-art dairy facility.
Round Pond State Park- including private Apple Island Resort easement donation (Conserved in 2001): The Round Pond State Park and Natural Area consists of approximately 150 acres of spectacular wetlands, fields, woodlands, and approximately 2000 feet of Lake Champlain shoreline. The property was conserved as part of the two-part Landon Farm and Round Pond Conservation Project in 2001, involving the partnership of the South Hero Land Trust, Vermont Land Trust, Lake Champlain Land Trust, and the Nature Conservancy. The property was then donated to the State of Vermont’s Agency of Natural Resources, Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation, with conservation easements held by the Lake Champlain Land Trust and the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board.
Wright Property (Conserved in 1999): In 1999, SHLT worked with Glen and Rose Wright who donated a conservation easement on 76 acres of agricultural fields and woodlands to Lake Champlain Land Trust. The property is adjacent to two other conserved properties; the Landon Farm (now Wells Family Farm) to the south and Buermann Hill to the north, creating a contiguous belt of conserved properties across the southeast corner of the island.