In 1994, NSOLF purchased a 38 acre field on Keeler Lane, just south of the bridge that bears its name. Almost the entire parcel is an open rolling field rising from Keeler Lane and descending to an unnamed tributary to the Titicus River. It is still hayed each summer. Several bluebird nesting boxes are located there, which has contributed to the increased bluebird population in North Salem. In addition, each spring, bobolinks migrate north from South America and nest in the tall grasses of this preserve, making this one of the last known places of habitat for the bobolink.
Stewards: Lois and Ken Lippmann
Entry to the Hayfield-on-Keeler is from two access points along Keeler Lane. The first is just past the bridge onto Keeler Lane from Route 121, and the second is at the far end of the preserve, at the metal gate.
The main trail, which is usually mowed, is 1.3 miles in total and follows the perimeter of the preserve. It provides a wonderful opportunity to enjoy a leisurely walk with a gradual incline in terrain. A wide variety of plant life can be observed alongside the trail. Three horse jumps make this a good place for riding. And if you come in May you will witness the arrival of the bobolink.
To appreciate the scenic splendor of this preserve, take one of the short cut paths and hike up to the center for a terrific panoramic of North Salem. It is not always mowed, so you will need appropriate hiking shoes.
Follow the perimeter path down to the Hearst Preserve. There you will find a short trail through the woods that you must also use to return to the Hayfield-on-Keeler and exit the preserves. The shade provided by the dense woods will cool you off if you visit in summer.