Featured National Recreation Trails: Mud Pond Trail – Pondicherry National Wildlife Refuge, New Hampshire

The Mud Pond Trail was constructed by the Youth Conservation Corps, US Fish and Wildlife Service staff and volunteers from the Friends of Pondicherry over a five summer period.

Visitors walk through an forest community uncommon to the Connecticut River Valley to a beautiful pond and fen deep within the refuge. The trail takes visitors, including those in strollers and wheelchairs on a unique raised boardwalk providing an experience unusual in New Hampshire. Benches allow visitors to sit and observe the wildlife, plant communities and scenery.

Mud Pond is home to three carnivorous plants and unusual wildlife for this part of New England, including Arctic Jutta butterfly, black-backed woodpecker, gray jay, boreal chickadee, yellow-bellied flycatcher, and palm warbler. Moose, black bear and snowshoe hare are sometimes seen along the trail.

The trailhead was built on a restored log landing and some of the trail follows old logging roads that are being restored. The boardwalk portion is on older forests that have not been harvested for over a century. The trail is located in the White Mountains of New Hampshire where opportunities for wheelchair accessible trails in this mountainous region are limited.

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