Acquisition of the Letort's Spring Garden Headwaters

CPC is committed to conserving critical habitat at the east branch headwaters of the Letort Spring Run, a nationally prominent trout fishery, situated in South Middleton Township, Cumberland County. A former watercress farm which occupied the site since 1891 was subdivided for home lots in 2012. In 2014, CPC negotiated a purchase option and has subsequently raised close to $415,000 to buy most of the farm. Its acquisition features wetlands, limestone springs, wild brown trout, the Letort Nature Trail (rail-trail), and significant historic resources. The Central PA Conservancy (CPC) recently closed on 30 acres and hopes to close on the remaining four acres by June. Additional gifts are needed as match for restoration, and to steward the preserve in the long-term.




CPC and partners are committed to securing and restoring integrity of the upper Letort Spring Run, while allowing access and education about the value of limestone streams, wetlands, and the regional history. By restoring the natural wetlands, stream channels, aquatic vegetation, historic structures, and removing invasive species, we aim to reverse the damage caused by years of commercial agricultural use and surrounding urban growth and development.

The site of the east branch of the Letort headwaters is:

  • A former commercial watercress farm that began production in 1891
  • Bisected by the Letort Nature Trail, managed by the Letort Regional Authority
  • Designated as an Exceptional Value Waterway (EV) by the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection and as a Class A Wild Trout Stream by the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission
  • Named in the PA Wild and Scenic Rivers legislation as an outstanding natural waterway
  • Listed as a locally significant site in the Natural Areas Inventory (NAI) of Cumberland County
  • Part of a Scenic River District adopted by a local ordinance of South Middleton Township

The Central Pennsylvania Conservancy requests YOUR SUPPORT to make this important restoration project a reality. Please consider a gift toward the effort by donating online today or mailing in your contribution.

Thank you for your generous support of conservation in your community!


Choose Letort Aquisition in the Drop-down list.
Or, mail your contribution, payable to Central PA Conservancy, to the CPC office today at:

Central PA Conservancy
Attn. Letort Acquisition
401 East Louther St., Suite 308
Carlisle, PA 17013

Another way to support the cause is to purchase the book publication,

THE LETORT: A Limestone Legacy,

published by Central Pennsylvania Conservancy and edited
by the 
Mid Atlantic Fly Fishing Guide