Last week, we shared some info and tips about navigating mud season, some of which involve being mindful of which trails you choose to hike and bike on in the spring. Thanks to the Middlebury Area Land Trust (MALT), the trails we know and love around Middlebury stay in good condition, despite the wear and tear they endure during mud season. MALT works to protect and preserve natural landscapes around Middlebury–including but not limited to hiking trails. MALT also works to strengthen recreational and educational outdoor opportunities by conserving the Middlebury area’s natural surroundings.
Last year, we made a carving of the TAM in order to give people the ability to touch the topography of the area and better connect with the land. We strive for our replicas to help more community members feel and understand the adventures ahead, no matter their age or abilities. When you touch this diorama, you can follow the rivers and trails with your finger, while your hand climbs and descends with the changes in elevation of the terrain. You can find this model at the MALT office or in educational programs led by MALT.
Incorporated in 1987 as the “Middlebury Land Trust,” the organization began its work preserving the natural landscapes of Middlebury. In 1996 the name changed to what it is now as The Trust expanded to include the towns surrounding Middlebury. MALT is responsible for the creation and maintenance of the beloved Trail Around Middlebury (TAM). The MALT team has created almost thirty miles of trails in the Middlebury area (wow!), and these trails connect into an extensive loop around town, with many offshoots headed into the countryside. MALT is working to connect the TAM with the North Country National Scenic Trail and the Long Trail, and we’re super excited about this and will let you know when the project is complete!
MALT has information about and maps of local trails and Middlebury lands. Visit their website to find out more about the work that they do every day to maintain the beautiful natural landscapes of Middlebury that we know and love!