Both parks are open dawn to dusk.
Please check the Town of Wells website and signage for current rules.Town of Wells website
Enjoy swimming, picnics, hiking, mountain biking, hunting and more at these two town-owned properties in Wells, Vermont.
The town of Wells surrounds Little Lake, the southern end of Lake St. Catherine. Hundreds of camps and second homes ring its shores, yet until fairly recently, there was no public access to the water.
Instead, locals relied on the goodwill of the Delaney sisters who let them use their waterside land to enjoy the lake for nearly 50 years.
When the Delaney sisters passed away, their 300-acre property was at risk of being divided up and sold off. Community members, many of whom had strong memories of fishing and swimming in Little Lake, realized that their children might not have the same chance.
We committed to this effort and made it one of our community campaigns. We bought the land using a bridge loan to give the community time to plan and raise money. There was a groundswell of local support. Excited residents raised $150,000 to help save the land. The Vermont Housing and Conservation Board offered critical support as well.
The Town of Wells took ownership of the woods and lakeside park area and we conserved and sold the farmland to working farmers.
The Wells Lakeside Park on North Street is thriving. The Town added docks and barbeque grills and a pavilion was built for community events and weddings. School children visit on field trips to learn more about the nature that surrounds them. Visitors can walk and bike forest trails, hunt and fish, and kayak and swim.
“We wanted the kids of today to have that same opportunity that we did growing up. Now we have a little outdoor space to run and play and not be concerned. So, it’s wonderful.”
— Nora Sargent, community member and volunteer
Just a bit south of Lakeside Park on North Street there is a turnoff on Delaney Cross Road. This leads to a 173-acre town forest called Delaney Woods.
There are around five miles of trails that are managed by Slate Valley Trails. The trails can be used for walking, mountain biking, and snowshoeing.
The woods are home to some rare and uncommon plants, animals, and wetlands, including a special type of hemlock swamp. The land also has vernal pools that are teeming with amphibian life during their breeding seasons.