The Mary French Reservation is named for the late Mary French, a 38-year Andover resident, school administrator, and former selectwoman. The short trail and exceptional 1,000 foot boardwalk over the Skug River were constructed by the Andover Trails Committee, Andover Youth Services, and the Andover school's Youth at Risk program.
Although only 9.28 acres in size and mostly occupied by a wetland, Mary French Reservation's boardwalk offers exceptional birdwatching and nature observation opportunities. This trail also provides a connection to nearby Hammond Reservation (AVIS), Jenkin's Quarry (Andover Conservation Land), and the Skug River Reservation (AVIS). The Bay Circuit Trail crosses in and out of these nearby properties, for a total of 1.1 miles.
The Skug River's waters were once dammed to power a local sawmill and grist mill, and evidence of the dam's walls can still be seen in the adjacent Harold Parker State Forest. Today, highly active beaver populations in the wetland cause seasonal damming and flooding over the boardwalk.