ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Hiking the Fox Parcel Trail

Updated on August 21, 2014

Wilton Wildlife Preserve Trail Series: Fox Parcel

Wilton Wildlife Preserve Trail Series: Fox Trail

In this fourth installment of my trail series in the Wilton Wildlife Preserve, I will introduce you to the Fox Trail, another favorite trail of mine. Although called the Fox Parcel, I have never seen a fox on this trail. I am of course teasing you because I’m pretty sure it is named after the former owners.

What I have seen are Karner Blue Butterflies, an endangered species here in upstate New York. Historically, there is an interesting story about their near disappearance and their resurgence.

Historic records indicate Karner blue butterflies were once found on this property. As woody vegetation took root and grew, it shaded out the butterfly’s host plant, the wild blue lupine. Eventually, the butterfly disappeared. Proposed for subdivision several times, a partnership of the Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park, The Nature Conservancy, and the Town of Wilton, along with a grant from the Saratoga County Open Space Protection Program, succeeded in protecting this 89-acre parcel in 2005. The Nature Conservancy owns the Fox parcel.

This parcel actually has three trails on it. The yellow trail is the main trail and the orange trail and red trail feed off of it. These trails are a combination of sandy uplands and pine barren vernal ponds, a designated rare community in New York State. Across the Wilton Wildlife Preserve & Park, almost 130 acres of the sandy uplands have been restored to early successional habitat, which allows for the recolonization of the Karner blue butterfly.

For this hike, I took the yellow trail to the red trail, which now includes a new portion that extends the trail to two miles one way and connects the trail to Ruggles Road, which is home to the Neilmann Parcel Trail.

What I really like about this trail is the abundance of butterflies in the summer. Besides the Karners, I have seen Swallowtails,white cabbage butterflies, Monarchs and the common Sootywing. The Karners have two hatchings, one in late May, and one in middle July. They are so many of them, at times it seems like there are clouds of them and are quite beautiful.

On this particular hike I saw all the butterflies I mentioned and got a really nice close-up picture of a Swallowtail. It seemed like he was perched on that leaf forever just waiting to get his picture taken.

As mentioned above, there are several vernal ponds on the property and they are perfect for those hikers with dogs who want to cool off. The video I shot is of my dog Lucky having a grand old time digging up sticks and chasing bull frogs.

The trails are well-marked and consist of sand and forest floors. They are also fairly hilly, but none of the hills are too steep. Also scattered on the trails are several foot bridges that traverse seasonally muddy areas on the trails.

Although I have not seen as many animals on this trail as on others, I have seen a wide variety of birds, some chipmunks and squirrels and once caught a glimpse of a White Tail deer. The trails wander in and out of forested areas and fields and in late spring and early summer, the fields will be carpeted with Blue Lupine and Butterfly weed, both of which the Karner Butterfly depends on for food.

The forest areas have a lot of dead fall trees and stumps, and can be used as a source of education for children that are hiking with you. As these trails are fairly smooth, the Fox parcel is a good hike for kids.

Some of the animals and plant life that can be found on fallen logs include moss, lichen and an abundance of insects. Also, look for holes in the fallen trees, as well as still-standing trees, as they are a sure sign of woodpeckers, who favor these woods.

The only caution I have is the roots on the trails. Although they are not as abundant as on other trails, they still need to be looked out for, especially with kids.

All in all, the Fox Parcel Trail is a fairly easy, fun trail to walk, with the abundance of butterflies a sure hit. I highly recommend this trail.

My dog Lucky playing in one of the Vernal pools

How am I doing?

What can I do to improve my articles on hiking in Upstate New York?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)