Gray-Hart Preserve is one of the state’s largest fens, which is a type of wetland that tends to be marsh-like in nature. This area is a wonderful addition to the preserves found in Iowa.
Why you should visit:
Walking in this area has been described as feeling like walking on a waterbed. These fens - basically areas of extremely spongy and water-filled land - are beautiful as well as intriguing because of their unique array of plant life.
Why the Conservancy Selected This Site
Gray-Hart Preserve is one of the largest fen wetlands in the state and hosts a multitude of rare fen plants. The Conservancy obtained this site through a bargain sale from Marty Mihall and named it in honor of her parents.
What the Conservancy Has Done/Is Doing
The Conservancy has partnered with Fayette County Conservation Board to help manage the site. An access road, which allows public access to the preserve to the site, thanks to the support of Marty Mihall.
What to See: Plants
Grass-of-Parnasis, yarrow, shooting star, prairie smoke, marsh phlox, big bluestem and many other rare plants are found at this site.
What to See: Animals
There is not a complete survey of the animals located on this preserve.
This area is extremely wet. Wear clothing that can get wet and possibly muddy. Be aware of a fence that runs through the middle of the fen. The fenced area is privately owned, so please do not walk inside the fence. Also, be careful when walking through the bog. Individuals with limited mobility should show caution.
Half of this preserve is privately owned. When visiting, please be aware of the boundaries of the area.