At the “Our Mountain Voices” event Sept. 22 at the Camden Opera House, Coastal Mountains Land Trust launched the public phase of the Round the Mountain Collaboration, a partnership among Coastal Mountains Land Trust, Maine Water Co., Maine Coast Heritage Trust, the towns of Camden and Rockport and several local outdoor recreation groups. To date, $2.3 million of the total $4.2 million required for the project, has been raised through foundation grants and individual giving.

The land trust is now asking the community to support the effort to purchase conservation easements on 1,400 acres of land on Ragged Mountain, secure the water supply for six coastal communities, and build the 9-mile Round the Mountain Trail around Ragged Mountain.

To encourage community support, a few anonymous donors have pledged to match up to $100,000 in gifts from the public. Additionally, Maine Water has promised to make a $200,000 donation toward the construction of the Round the Mountain Trail immediately upon the closing of the Mirror Lake Conservation Easement, scheduled for Dec. 31. As such, every dollar given in support of this project between now and the end of the year will result in the release of three additional dollars in support.

The Land Trust must raise $500,000 still needed to secure the 790-acre Mirror Lake Conservation Easement by Dec. 31, when the first phase must be purchased. The next phase of the project will be to begin construction of the next four miles of the Round the Mountain Trail in the second half of 2018. Gifts of support can be made directly to Coastal Mountains Land Trust’s office or by visiting the website at

Fourteen years ago, Coastal Mountains Land Trust embraced the vision to conserve Bald and Ragged mountains, a 3,500-acre area in Camden, Hope and Rockport. To date, it has protected more than 51 percent of these mountains, which have also become popular outdoor recreation assets. The success of the current Round the Mountain Collaboration would bring that goal to 85 percent complete.