Solon / Embden
These islands are located in the Kennebec River, south of Gray Island. The forest cover type is a mixture of floodplain and upland tree species, including Silver Maple, White Birch, and White Pine. Ostrich Fern (fiddleheads) can readily be found in many areas, considered a delicacy by many in the springtime. Identified by the Maine Dept. of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife as Inland Waterfowl Habitat, these islands provide a diverse range of habitats for a variety of species. The islands also are heavily used during summer months by paddlers enjoying float trips down the Kennebec River from Solon to North Anson.
Thompson Islands Madison
These islands in the Kennebec River have a mixed cover of trees (e.g. Silver Maple; Alder), shrubs and agricultural land (hayfield). Some rare plants and animals may be present. The islands offer a pleasant view from both the river and the nearby public road, which is great for water access. Kayaking here is such a treat!
Great Eddy Island
This small island is located in the Kennebec River south of the Gorge at the downstream end of the Great Eddy. The area is highly visible from nearby SWT properties as well as Route 2 and Coburn Park. The island is often flooded during periods of high water and is covered primarily with hardwood and herbaceous plants and shrubs.
Directions: Skowhegan, in Kennebec River near east side, downstream of Cleaver Landing, Kennebec Banks Picnic Area, and Wesserunsett Stream Point.
It has floodplain soils with white ash and unfortunately, a healthy stand of Japanese knotweed.
History/Archaeology: The Kennebec was a major canoe route for Native Americans. The island is shown on the 1795 Plan of Town of Canaan in Skowhegan On The Kennebec by Louise Coburn (Vol. 1, page 408) and a Pooler road is mentioned on page 411 as being on that map. Coburn notes there was a ford across the Wesserunsett near its outlet (pages 412-413), which would therefore have been near Pooler Island. The island is shown in the 1883 Colby Atlas and on the 1955 USGS topo, but not on the 1913 topo.
Future plans include clearing the island of knotweed and establishing a picnic area.