Posted on April 6, 2021 and last updated on September 30, 2022

Moses Woodman Preserve, Buxton


  • Preserve Size: 60 acres
  • Trail Mileage: 1.3 miles in network
  • Pets: yes
  • Difficulty: easy to moderate
  • Sights: Saco River

This preserve might fly a bit under the radar, and the initial 0.4-mile trek on a woods road, across a power line, and through a sustainably harvested patch of woods does not quite hint at the true charm of the place. If you trudge through the first half-mile, and walk down a short, steep hill, you’ll begin approaching the Saco River and some scenic riverside benches. It is pretty and peaceful.

The Saco Valley Land Trust has included some signs explaining its forest management plan for the parcel at the trailhead kiosk, and a nearby boulder has a plaque with a short history about the family that owned the land. The trail is blazed, and there are a few homemade trail signs helping you from getting lost.

The path begins on the wide track behind the gate, continuing 0.4 miles until it makes a sharp left turn. It cuts across the forest for about 0.25 miles, passing a side leg to a bench on a ledge, before heading down a steepish bank. At the bottom of the hill the trail diverges into two loops (Sean’s Trail and Dylan’s Way)—both equally nice, and both with benches by the river.

Directions: The Moses Woodman Preserve is listed on Google maps on Simpson Road, about 450 feet beyond Fieldview Drive, if you’re coming from the coast. The Google icon marks the location of the trailhead kiosk. I think it’s better to park slightly beyond that, in front of a gated dirt road with a sign for the Saco Valley Land Trust. There’s room for just about two cars.

Let me know if you have any trail updates or corrections!