Located in Casco, Mayberry Hill is 160 acres of mixed woodlands, meadow and streams. A one mile trail meanders through the preserve and can be enjoyed by visitors and local residents for hiking and educational opportunities. Benches have been placed at intervals along the trail to assist walkers. We ask all visitors to observe the use guidelines posted below.
- Day hiking and dog walking
- Snowshoeing and cross country skiing
- Hunting (please wear blaze orange in season)
- No vehicles, motorized or non-motorized, are allowed on the property
- Stay on marked trail
- Carry out what you carry in
- No campfires or camping
- Keep pets under control at all times
- Do not disturb wildlife and plant life
From Portland, follow Rt. 302 to Rt. 121 which brings you into Casco. In the village center, turn right on Mayberry Hill Road, drive to the top of the hill. Turn left at the stop sign. The preserve is a short distance on the right. Park along the road at the trail head. Use caution here as a blind curve makes it difficult for other motorists to see.
For GPS: Mayberry Hill Preserve trail head is located at approximately 397 Mayberry Hill Rd.
In 1990, John and Nancy Gillis donated this land, making it Loon Echo’s first preserve. Now designated Mayberry Hill Preserve, the land consists of approximately 160 acres. Loon Echo Land Trust must preserve the essential natural character of the site.
The preserve has been dedicated to remain as undeveloped open space to be used for scientific and educational uses. Most of the preserve property is former agricultural land. The land was abandoned and left to naturally revert to woodland throughout the last century. Rock walls are prominent throughout the property as well as portions of granite outcrops that were cut and used for building foundations.
Look for history as you walk. Stone walls and barbed wire fences are evidence of agricultural uses in previous centuries. As the trail starts to go downhill more steeply, it bends around a quarry pit on the left, where foundation stones were cut from ledge. On the bottom leg of the loop, you can find a logging landing. Where the upper trail comes near the edge of the fields, a few apple trees in the woods are all that remain of orchards.
Animal signs are everywhere. Moose, deer, fox, rabbit, and bear droppings, owl pellets, and woodpecker holes on tree trunks show who lives in these woods (Pileated woodpeckers make the large holes.) A ruffed grouse might surprise a hiker with its take-off. You may see or hear the golden-crowned kinglet, in addition to chickadees, jays, woodcock, turkey, and crows.
Common woods flowers are starflower, wintergreen, polygala, trailing arbutus, goldthread, and sarsaparilla. White oak, red oak, beech, red maple, striped maple, ash, and white pine are common and you may also find a few hornbeam.
Be aware of hazards along the trail. Poison ivy and ticks are common in the outdoors – learn how to identify and avoid them. Be careful of your footing, as the terrain is uneven.