The Martha’s Vineyard Land Bank began the month by opening two new preserves to the public.

James Pond Preserve, a 13-acre parcel next to Lambert’s Cove Beach in West Tisbury, opened last weekend after a long delay because of a state review process, and a 350-foot trail at Caleb’s Pond Preserve on Chappaquiddick opened on Feb. 2.

The Chappaquiddick property opened without its planned waterfront access, after pushback from neighbors caused the land bank to put off plans to construct a boardwalk and boat launch.

James Pond Preserve was purchased in a series of transactions in 2020 and 2021 for a total of $12.2 million, and includes 650 feet of beach and 700 feet of pond frontage.

“It’s a very beautiful pondside hike through a grassland with long distance water views,” said land bank executive director James Lengyel. “It’s just an exceptional property and the land bank was so lucky to be able to purchase it.”

Trails traverse open woodland, grassland, swamp and coastal dune environments, land bank ecologist Julie Russell said, and the trail system takes advantage of hilly high points to give walkers a view of the range of habitats.

“You walk up, and you have this great view in the shade of these big huge trees, looking at James Pond, and you can even see over to the dunes,” Ms. Russell said.   

The organization also constructed a public kayak launch, giving visitors access to James Pond.

“It’s a lovely little pond, with not a lot of activity on it,” Ms. Russell said.

There are 12 parking spots at the trailhead off Lambert’s Cove Road. During the busy season, between June 1 and Sept. 15 those spots will be awarded via an online reservation system. There will also be a limit of 110 individuals at a time during the peak season, monitored by an on-site staff member, she said.

Mr. Lengyel said that the entire property is worth experiencing.

“It’s an exceptionally beautiful beach, but the preserve is so much more than the beach,” he said.