Schlenker Conservation Area
Moose Mountains Regional Greenways, together with conserving landowner Cheryl Schlenker, permanently conserved 36 acres of prime forest and agricultural land in Wakefield, NH through a conservation easement in 2021.
The property was previously owned by the Garvin family, who were early settlers to the Wakefield area. One branch of the original Garvin family owned the nearby Garvin Building in the village of Wakefield, which began as a general store. Cheryl Schlenker purchased the property in 1977, at which time it was the last and only property on Oak Hill Road from the Witchtrot Road end. The property features an 18th century cape house, as well as a barn that the Schlenkers later built for cattle (neither are included in the easement area). Today, the property has approximately 5 acres in open agricultural fields as well as two Garvin family cemeteries that predate the Schlenkers.
The Schlenker Property boasts views of the Moose Mountains and the Ossipee Range from its open fields and is within close proximity to many other conserved parcels, including the nearby Remick property. Much of the property is bordered by impressive, wide, “filled” stone walls, indicating that a high percentage of the land was tilled. To that end, “prime” designated agricultural soils occupy approximately 15 acres (36%) of the land, representing an unusually high percentage and increasing the conservation value of the land significantly. Open fields are surrounded by mature pine forests, providing good habitat for wildlife and rounding out the conservation features of the property.
Moose Mountains Regional Greenways holds the conservation easement on this property, which will remain privately owned by the Schlenker family. This property is not open to public access or recreational opportunities. The costs of the easement were covered in part by the Alden Young Fund, a fund established to support and increase conservation efforts within the town of Wakefield. Remaining funds for the project were provided through public fundraising efforts, a contribution from the conserving landowner, a matching gift by neighboring landowner Darayl Remick, and grant awards.