As part of its upcoming fiftieth anniversary, the Vineyard Conservation Society begins its winter walks series on Saturday afternoon this weekend with a walk back in time — to the Gay Head Cliffs where in its founding year, the society collaborated with the town of Gay Head to win a National Landmark designation for the famous clay cliffs in the westernmost reaches of the Island.

“Since that time, VCS has helped to conserve many other parcels of open space, family farms and natural habitats, but the Gay Head Cliffs will always remain one of the most iconic and powerful reminders of what is special about this Island,” the society said in its almanac this week.

This historic VCS walk also serves as a reminder of the many wonderful walks available to Islanders in the off-season. VCS hosts their free walks from December until March, some on properties that are otherwise not open to the public. There are also guided walks on land bank properties and on conservation lands owned by The Trustees of Reservations.

And then there are the walks we take in a less organized fashion, perhaps a long Sunday morning ramble on some previously undiscovered woodland trail. Alone with the dog or with a friend, these walks are restorative and a good antidote for chasing away the winter blues.

The VCS walk begins at one o’clock on Saturday and promises to be invigorating and intellectually engaging. Parking will be at the Aquinnah beach lot; look for VCS signs and yellow flags while driving up Moshup Trail from the down-Island end. The time of the walk coincides with low tide, so participants will have a chance to see close up the glacial deposits that are rapidly eroding along the cliffs.