The Kingston Family Nature Preserve is 48 hectares (119 acres), protecting forest and wetland along the banks of the Northwest Miramichi River, a significant tributary of the Miramichi River. Approximately 1.5 km northeast of this preserve is the East Branch Portage River Protected Natural Area (PNA), legally protected provincial Crown Land, which totals 10, 897 hectares (26, 927 acres).
The Mi’Kmaq tribe has called the area of Metepenagiag (Red Bank), where the Northwest and Southwest Miramichi rivers meet, home for over 2000 years. The Northwest Miramichi River is known to locals as the Norwest, and has traditionally been a popular fishing hole for both visitors to and residents of Northumberland County.
This land became known as the Kingston Family Nature Preserve when it was donated to the Nature Trust of New Brunswick in 2015. The donation was made in memory of William and Loreen (Sherrard) Kingston, as well as in memory of Paul Kingston and Lydia Byrd Kingston who settled this land when they arrived from Ireland in 1826.
The Kingston Family Nature Preserve offers a variety of habitats that supports a diversity of life, including mixed woods, conifer stands of white spruce (Picea glauca) and jack pine (Pinus banksiana), graminoid and shrub meadows, riparian zone along brooks and the Northwest Miramichi River, and wetland. In September 2015, a preliminary botanical survey was conducted and a total of 153 species of vascular plants were observed, with two of them being considered uncommon: Hayden’s Sedge (Carex haydenii) and Oakes’ Pondweed (Potamogeton oakesianus).
Access and Activities
The Kingston Family Nature Preserve is located in Northumberland County, 31 km northwest of Miramichi and 7 km northeast of Wayerton. It is intersected by Baisley Road, which provides good access to the property though it is not recommended for vehicles without high ground clearance. Pedestrian access is permitted, but there are no trail systems on the preserve. Motorized vehicles are not permitted due to the sensitive wetland habitat found here.
*The property is undeveloped and there are a variety of hazards and risks associated with accessing this preserve. While this nature preserve is open for public access, visitors must assume responsibility for their own actions and safety and are to use the land at their own risk.