Please contact me if you would like a downloadable map of Smith Brook Trail to.
To Get There. The Audubon Preserve is located in Deering on Clement Hill Rd. From Deering Center Rd (NH Rt. 149) follow Clement Hill Rd., turning sharply right where North Rd goes straight (approx. 1.5 mi) and past the first marked parking area, on the right, then downhill past two private homes and down a steep dirt road to the bottom of the hill (approx. 09 mi), opposite Tree Frog Pond on the left. There is parking area on the right. You can reach Black Fox Pond from this parking area.
Smith Brook drains Black Fox Pond to the Piscatquog River through Dudley Brook. Pick up Smith Brook Trail directly opposite the parking area, across Clement Hill Rd. The trail is marked with yellow blazes and the entire loop is a little over 1 mile. The trail passes through a mixture of forest types, pine at first and the mixed hardwood. The trail is level, with no gain or loss in elevation, and smooth with the exception of one short stretch that crosses the drainage of a small pond. It is an easy trail.
The first part of Smith Brook Trail, the western edge, follows Tree Frog Pond. This is a nesting site for wood ducks and wood duck nesting boxes have been placed on the pond. Great blue heron also nest on the pond. Both of these species are sensitive to noise, so if you want to see them you should go quietly. On June nights you will hear the tree frogs singing. Some interesting plants along the trail are the orchids slender ladies’ tresses (Spiranthes lacera) and checkered rattlesnake plantain (Goodyeara pubescens), and pipsissewa (Chimaphila umbellata) and a Pyrola species for which I have not yet seen flowers. The Spiranthes and Pyrola should flower in July or August. In September 2017 I found a beautiful, but deadly destroying angel mushroom (Amanita virosa) at the bridge across Smith Brook.
The trail follows along Smith Brook to a bridge and then follows the brook back past a beaver marsh, returning to Clement Hill Rd at Smith Brook, where you turn right along the road for about ¼ mile to return to the parking area.