Nature Conservancy Boardwalk Makes Wild Orchids More Accessible

Jul 6, 2015

Eshqua Bog, in Hartland, is home to a variety of unique plants, including an impressive population of wild orchids such as the rare lady's slipper. Now it is also home to an environmentally sensitive, accessible boardwalk and a parking area built to help accommodate the thousands of naturalists that The Nature Conservancy says visit each year.

The Nature Conservancy in Vermont constructed the 460 foot boardwalk, which includes multiple platforms where visitors can view the 40 acre sanctuary surrounding the eight acre wetland where the orchids thrive. The Eshqua bog preserve is jointly owned by The Nature Conservancy and the New England Wildflower Society.

The rare wild orchid Cypripedium reginae, commonly called lady's slipper, thrives in Hartland's Eshqua Bog.
Credit JW Sharpless

“This project helps us directly connect more people with nature and its treasures and benefits. We are so thankful to have had Timber and Stone’s trail building expertise to ensure that great care was taken in respecting the environment while responsibly opening up the trail to more visitors,” Heather Furman, state director for Nature Conservancy in Vermont, said in a news release.

The Nature Conservancy held a ribbon cutting in late June, when the lady slippers were in peak bloom. Over 50 visitors turned out for the ceremony and guided tours on the new boardwalk.