April Garlic Mustard Pull
There will be a volunteer workday on Saturday April 12, 2014, to remove the invasive garlic mustard from the preserve. Cedar Bluffs is great year-round, but the springtime wildflower display is amazing. Help us keep it that way by pulling the unwanted garlic mustard from the site.
We have a rare and exciting opportunity to double the size of Cedar Bluffs Nature Preserve. The challenging terrain and scenic views have made this preserve a Hoosier favorite. Cedar Bluffs Preserve provides a stunning display of species adaptation and survival in a harsh environment. At its eastern end, the bluff narrows and drops off into a rockwalled valley cut by a Clear Creek tributary. This canyon protects a lavish spring wildflower display and exhibits remarkable rock formations.
Why do we want this tract of land?
Acquisition of this tract will help protect the forest that buffers the limestone cliff communities and will reduce visitor impact on sensitive bluff tops by enlarging the overall size of the protected area. Cedar Bluffs is a very popular preserve, which is a good thing. The increased visitation, however, can come at a cost of the plants and animals here. Increasing the preserve size just spreads the love!
We are reaching our fundraising goal to make this acquisition possible, and we need your help. Your gift of $10, $25, $50 or more will help us reach our goal. Help us make this acquisition possible.
Want to see why we think Cedar Bluffs is so special? Visit it this weekend!
What You Will See:
Remarkable rock formations; white, black and scarlet oak trees; on the bluff top are flowering spurge, nodding onion, and hoary puccoon; abundant spring wildflower display
What the Conservancy is Doing: Much of the bluff top was bare dirt before the restoration started. Years of trampling had eliminated most of the plants, except from rock crevices. In 2003, a split rail fence was installed to keep visitors on the trail and allow the trampled areas to re-vegetate. Currently, invasive species control and trail maintenance are typical stewardship activities.
Special Note: While this preserve is open for visitation, there is only one access route into the preserve. Visitors MUST use the marked access route from Ketcham Road into the preserve or they will be trespassing on our neighbor's property. The marked access route ends at the base of the bluff. To access the bluff top continue east along the rocky shoreline of Raccoon Creek until you reach the eastern point of the bluff. On the far side of the point look for an un-marked rugged trail which zig-zags up the steep sides of the bluff. Please use extra caution during wet conditions! The preserve may only be visited from dawn to dusk. Please keep in mind that as in all nature preserves, rock climbing, rappelling and campfires are prohibited.
Despite the hardiness of the plants found at this preserve, they are still very vulnerable to trampling. Help protect the native vegetation by staying off portions of the bluff top enclosed by the cedar fence.
Directions to Cedar Bluffs:
From Bloomington, Indiana, travel south on SR 37 to Smithville Road and turn right (west). At the "T" intersection, turn left, then immediately right onto Ketcham Road. Travel approximately 3 miles to Cedar Bluff Road, but continue on Ketcham road for another 0.5 mile to where the power line right of way crosses the road and park on the left side of the road. You have gone too far if you cross over Clear Creek.