Vermont

Chickering Bog Natural Area


Just 15 minutes from Vermont's state capitol of Montpelier, this wide-open peatland, circled by dark tamarack, spruce and fir forest, feels as if it is a world away. Chickering Bog began to form when glaciers receded from Vermont over 10,000 years ago and left behind a bedrock basin that filled with water. Chickering Bog is actually misnamed; this so-called bog is really a fen. Water enters bogs solely through rainwater, while fens like Chickering Bog are also fed by calcium-rich groundwater and springs.

A one mile trail and boardwalk named after our former director, Bob Klein, allows visitors to get close to the myriad of fen plants such as blue fag iris and showy lady's slipper orchids, as well as to wildlife. Bullfrogs, pickerel frogs, northern leopard frogs and wood frogs all strike up their choruses in season. Wood ducks,barred owls, pileated woodpeckers, swamp sparrows and other birds are found here. In winter, the tracks of mammals ranging from fishers to white-tailed deer and snowshoe hares crisscross the fen's frozen surface.

This special natural area is now being recognized with a Class I Wetland Designation which is like winning "best in show" among conservation circles. We invite you to come visit what is considered the largest and best example of a rich fen in Vermont.

Size

129 acres

What the Conservancy is Doing

We completed protection of the bog and most of the surrounding watershed in 2014.

var mapOptions = {

There is a one-mile trail at Chickering Bog Natural Area. An easy walk, the trail leads to a new boardwalk that was replaced in 2006 with the help of a Vermont Youth Conservation Corps team so that visitors could continue to walk out over the bog without disturbing it. A brochure is available at the preserve. Please read our Preserve Visitation Guidelines.

What to See: Plants

Chickering Bog is home to a large variety of fen plants including grass pink, sundew, cotton grass, blue flag iris, sweet gale, pitcher plant, showy lady’s slipper and livid sedge.

What to See: Animals

Frogs, wood ducks, crows, nuthatches, pileated woodpeckers and the tracks of fur-bearing mammals like bears, white-tailed deer and hares have been spotted here.

Directions

911 Address: 2410 George Road, Calais, Vermont

Chickering Bog Natural area is located in East Montpelier and Calais. To get there from Montpelier, take Route 2 east 6.5 miles to East Montpelier. Then take Route 14 north about 3.2 miles to North Montpelier where you will see Riverbend Store and North Montpelier Pond on your right. Continue on Route 14 for 1.1 miles until you see Lightening Ridge Road on the left, which is marked by a sign for the Calais Elementary School. Turn left and go 1.5 miles until George Road on your right.  Take a right onto George Road--immediately after turning, you will see a parking area on your left labeled "Chickering Bog Parking Area."

View a map of Chickering Bog.

Discussion

Have you been to this preserve? Are you thinking of visiting? See what others are saying about their experiences and add your comments below.

Add Your Comments

Time for you to join the discussion. Tell us about your experience at this preserve. What plants and animals did you see? When did you go? You can help others plan their visit when you share your thoughts. And thank you for visiting one of our nature preserves!

comments powered by Disqus



Read our guidelines on posting comments




GET TEXT UPDATES*

x animal

Sign up for Nature eNews!

Sign Up for Nature e-News

Learn about the places you love. Find out
how you can help.

Thank you for joining our online community!

We’ll be in touch soon with more Nature Conservancy news, updates and exciting stories.

Please leave this field empty

I'm already on the list!

Read our privacy policy.