Wright's Mountain and Devil's Den (Bradford, VT)

Overall Themes

  • Increasing access
  • Sustainable use
  • Connecting to downtown

Bradford Town Forest Recreation Plan


Bradford town forest map

Wright’s Mountain and Devil’s Den Town Forest is a 507-acre parcel within 10 minutes of Bradford’s downtown. This town forest is widely used by local residents and schools and is increasingly becoming a destination for visitors to the region. The Bradford Conservation Commission, charged with managing the town forest, is interested in increasing use and considering its impact on economic development opportunities, but in a way that balances the integrity of forest values and existing wildlife populations.


Wright’s Mountain and Devil’s Den Town Forest is made up of multiple parcels that the Bradford Conservation Commission (which manages the forest) and the town have been acquiring since 1994. Now the entire block is under a conservation easement held by the Upper Valley Land Trust.  The easement establishes that the forest will be conserved as wildlife habitat and forest land that is open to the public for recreation, education, and enjoyment. There are 11.5 miles of trails and three trailheads, but only one parking area is plowed during the winter, dramatically limiting access.

Strategies to Implement Vision

As a result of the planning process, the town generated a robust action plan matrix. Action steps include:

Words of Wisdom

“Have a backup plan for funding!” says Nancy Jones, Chair of the Bradford Conservation Commission. When a grant application to build new parking lots was denied, the BCC found other ways to come up with the funds and was able to get the parking lots completed. Bradford is steadily ticking items off their action plan – in addition to the new parking lots, volunteer recruitment and forest attendance are high, the cabin has a new floor, Wright’s Mountain has beautiful signage, there are new trail bridges and benches built for pause places, and more projects are planning for next year. “This process gave us a list to keep in mind all the time, and the incentive to make needed improvements.”

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