Lys McLaughlin Pike

Why did you choose to conserve your land? What motivated you?

Because I don’t want the land to be developed. It’s crowded in the United States: the number of humans has tripled since I was born. We played roadside poker driving to Maine for the summer in the 40s: a chicken was 1 point, a cow 5, a sheep 10. No more farms along most of the way now.

Biologist Edward O. Wilson wrote “…I propose that only by committing half of the planet’s surface to nature can we hope to save the immensity of the life forms that compose it.” I am grateful to those who create and created national parks, who protect places so that veerys can sing, loons can call, foxes can roam and crops can grow in fields.

How did you conserve your land?

The first easement covered an old apple orchard and a field and was created in 199x. Heather Rogers drafted the second easement in 2007 which encompasses the majority of the rest of the land my parents owned, which easement also allows for farming and forestry. Both easements are held by Coastal Mountains Land Trust.

What makes your land so special to you?

I spent summers on this land as a child and loved the freedom the land provided – to go across the lake holding into my horse’s mane, to build hideouts back of the mountain where no adults could find us. As an adult, the remoteness and beauty of this land are increasingly precious.

How did you acquire your land?

I inherited the land from my parents who bought the house and surrounding fields and forest in the 1930s.

Why is protecting your land so important to you?

Knowing that the land will not be developed, built on, carved into small pieces which is harmful to humans as well as non humans in which category I include trees, soil, other animals, and everything else.