Broad Brook Forest is best suited to long-term timber investment. Alternative uses include year-round home construction along any of the access points or conversion of some lands to sugarbush management.
Broad Brook Forest is located in southeastern Royalton Township. This area is mountainous and largely forested, with many town roads sharply twisting along rivers and streams as they pass the occasional homestead. While the property sits in a rural location, South Royalton village is just 3.5 miles to the north. Nestled in a bend along the White River, the village is home to Vermont Law School and has a small, central business district on the outskirts of the college campus.
From South Royalton village, it is just 16 miles to the junction of Interstates 89 and 91 and the White and Connecticut Rivers. Here, several towns join to form the Upper Valley Region. Hartford and Norwich, Vermont, together with Hanover and Lebanon, New Hampshire, are the nucleus of this region. There are national chain retailers in West Lebanon, unique and eclectic shops in Hanover and Norwich, as well as numerous restaurants and hotels throughout the area. Dartmouth College, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and King Arthur Flour are some of the major employers in the area. The combination of small towns, convenient services, cultural amenities and diverse outdoor recreation make this a popular place to live, work and play.
From the property, it is 2¼ hours southeast to Boston and 4¼ hours southwest to New York City.
A ridge stemming from Broad Brook Mountain bisects the property equally into two functional access points. The northern side of the land is accessed by the end of Frary Road. Here there is 935’ of property frontage along this town-maintained road. Frary Road continues beyond the property for a short way before it ends at the last house. From the road frontage, an internal access road runs roughly 2,000’ into the property.
The southern half of the property is accessed via the ±1,500’-long TH 53, a non-maintained town road. This road ends at the property boundary where there is a large clearing formerly used to sort forest products. From this point, a network of woods trails fan out in all directions.
A well-maintained VAST (Vermont Association of Snow Travelers) snowmobile trail runs through the northern end of the property.
The property covers much of the eastern portion of Broad Brook Mountain. Here, terrain falls in various directions from the many ridges that make up the Broad Brook Mountain complex. Topography is generally gentle to, at times, moderate. Aspects cover northern, eastern and southern directions.
As a mountain property, the several streams that run through the land are small and act as feeder streams to Broad Brook to the east. They are primarily at the top of the watershed. The high point on the forest (1,660’) is at the land’s southwestern end, while the lowest point (1,090’) is along the southern, main stream where it leaves the property.
The northern section of the forest along Frary Road has three subdivided and surveyed buildable lots (7.5, 20.7 and 10.5 acres), which are registered with the town (see maps). The southern end of the property also offers a building opportunity at the end of TH 53.
Timber data in this report are based on a comprehensive and monumented timber inventory conducted in July of 2017 for the purpose of establishing Capital Timber Value (CTV) and estimating potential sugarbush taps. 91 inventory points were sampled (1 plot per 6.1 acres), covering a 506’ X 506’ grid using a 10-factor prism (note: recent patch group cuts were not sampled). Sampling statistics are ±13.3% standard error for sawlog products and ±11.4% for all products combined at the 95% confidence interval. The timber data reveal a total sawlog volume of 2,264 MBF International ¼” scale (3.9 MBF/acre), with 6,651 pulpwood cords (11.6 cords/acre). Combined total commercial per acre volume is 19.5 cords, a figure about average for the region. Stumpage values were assigned to the volumes in November of 2020, producing a property-wide Capital Timber Value (CTV) of $591,000 ($1,006/total acre).
The species composition is dominated by hardwoods (84%), with softwoods holding the balance (16%). Species composition for all products combined offers a diverse mix and is led by sugar maple (34%) with the primary other species consisting of red maple (17%), yellow birch (13%), hemlock (11%), white ash (10%) and beech (7%). Common associates hold the balance.
Sawlog value is largely dominated by sugar maple (58%) with yellow birch, ash and red maple (35%) comprising nearly the entire balance, ensuring that future value growth will occur in the species that are highly desirable in the marketplace. Average diameter for all products combined is 13.5”, while the average sawlog diameter is nearly 15”.
The property may offer a sugarbush opportunity on some of its acreage. Much of the land slopes into the two access points; however, some areas fall to the east along the two main streams away from the access points. The 2017 timber inventory data indicate a property-wide potential tap count of 21,295, with roughly 64% of the taps from sugar maple and the balance from red maple. Trees 9” and greater were considered, providing an average of 37 taps/acre covering all acres. Where sugarbush potential is likely, the average taps per acre could be ±50. Also, the timber data indicate an additional 14,000 taps may become available in the coming decades from the maple resource within the 5-8” diameter class.
Details of the June 2017 timber inventory are available upon request.
Electric power is located along the Frary Road access at the property’s northern end. Power is roughly 2,000’ from the land’s northern access road.