The 25-acre Lightning Tree Reservation was conveyed to the Andover Conservation Commission in 2015 by the developer of a solar energy array that was built nearby.
Lightning Tree Reservation got its name from a large white pine tree that was struck by lightning, burned, and fell to the ground along the banks of the Shawsheen River. The tree is clearly visible from Meg’s Trail, which passes just to the south of the tree.
While not large in size, Lightning Tree Reservation contains sandy soils, a unique vegetation community that supports several state-listed plant, animal, and insect species, a vernal pool, and riverfront emergent wetlands. It is also contains some beautiful waterfront vistas, viewing benches from several scenic locations along the Shawsheen River, and a well-marked trail network.
The lands of Lightning Tree are contiguous with two abutting reservations that are owned and maintained by AVIS. When combined with Lightning Tree, these two reservations – known as Sanborn North and Sanborn South – permanently preserves approximately 40 acres of riverfront land along the southern banks of the Shawsheen River. Meg’s Trail – named in honor and memory of Meg Batcheller, a beloved Town of Andover employee and resident – traverses all three Reservations along the banks of the Shawsheen River.
While the Lightning Tree Reservation and parking area are in Andover, access to the Lightning Tree Reservation is through Tewksbury. The address 1320 South Street in Tewksbury will get you to the right place.
Parking is available in a clearly marked parking area at the end of South Street on the left.