Forest Society Education Programs at Hay Forest Reservation & The Fells

Colorful T-shirts of hikers in shadow at summit of Sunset HIll, view of Lake Sunapee in background
A Sunset Hill summit view of Lake Sunapee, at the Hay Reservation.

Summer 2024

Details coming soon!

Forest Society programs presented in partnership with The Fells, hosted by Dave Anderson


The Forest Society offers education programs at the 712-acre "Hay Forest Reservation" in Newbury, NH.  The literary legacy of award-winning Cape Cod naturalist, John Hay, son of Clarence and Alice Hay, lives on in Forest Society outreach programs and recreational trail improvements designed to connect the public to natural and cultural history of woodlots and former pastures of the Hay family's cherished summer home. Many programs are co-sponsored with The Fells historic estate and gardens. Visit The Fells website at for a full calendar listing of upcoming Fells events.

The unique cultural resources of the Hay Reservation include cellar holes of former farms, stonewalls and pastures that have reverted to forestland along more than 4 miles of excellent recreational hiking trails including the "Sunset Hill Trail" and "Old County Road." The trails provide excellent access to a rich outdoor classroom for natural history workshops connecting forest history to land use history. The Hay Reservation provides exceptional wildlife habitats, diverse forests on Sunset Hill and along Beech Brook with associated wetlands. Areas of active forest management – including timber harvesting and pre-commercial timber improvements provide an ideal setting for putreach education related to both forestry and wildlife ecology.

The original 675 acre tract of the Hay Reservation was donated to the Forest Society in 1960 by Clarence L. Hay and his wife, Alice Appleton Hay. The Hay Forest Reservation was expanded in 1998 with the purchase of the 37-acre Kidder Tract on Chalk Pond Road. Parking and access to the recreational trails is located at either end of the Old County Road (gated), at the Kidder Tract on Chalk Pond Road and at The Fells main Gate House office parking area opposite the trailhead for the Sunset Hill Trail.

The Hay Forest Reservation is the largest tract of a nearly 900-acre complex of protected land overlooking Lake Sunapee. The adjacent 81-acre US Fish and Wildlife Service John Hay National Wildlife Refuge and the 83-acre "The Fells" Hay family home with its landscaped grounds provide horticultural and cultural history education programs including house and garden tours.

Directions: From Concord and points south and east: Take I-89 north to Exit 9 (Route 103) and go west to Newbury. Then take Route 103A north 2.2 miles. From Lebanon, Hanover and points north: Follow I-89 south to Exit 12 (Route 11), turn right at end of ramp and immediately left onto Route 103A south. Follow 103A for 5.6 miles.