Establishing Warm Springs Mountain Preserve in March 2002 helped get the Conservancy’s $52 million Wild Virginia Campaign off to a rousing start, as did Byron Jorjorian’s beautiful images of the mountain.
The transaction was remarkable for its size, historic significance and conservation potential. “Yet none of these elements has ever been able to outshine the simple, yet overwhelming, beauty,” says Greg Edwards, philanthropy director at the time (and avid pilot).
Volunteer photographer Mary Porter caught this dramatic image just after an ice storm swept the mountain in October, 2002.
Finding dwarf iris flowers during an early-spring walk with trustee Truman Semans is among Brad Kreps’ favorite memories. Brad was the first Allegheny Highlands director and currently leads the Clinch Valley Program.
Conservancy staff members have introduced many visitors to the wonders of Warm Springs Mountain over the preserve’s first 10 years.
This cub scrambling up a tree caught Allegheny Highlands director Marek Smiths’s eye as he hiked toward Flag Rock. “That moment was priceless,” Marek recalls of his first bear sighting on the mountain.
Volunteer trustee Lisa Collis and her husband, Sen. Mark Warner, joined with staff and other supporters to dedicate the Collis-Warner Overlook at Flag Rock in 2009.
The U.S. Forest Service joined with the Conservancy in 2010 to conduct the first cross-boundary prescribed burn on 920 acres spanning the preserve and George Washington National Forest.
Jen Dalke, volunteer coordinator, shared this photo of a pink lady’s slipper orchid and her favorite memory, a recent volunteer recognition event: “We hiked several trails and spent the evening around the campfire cooking and sharing stories.”
Warm Springs Mountain hosted interns from the Conservancy’s LEAF program this past summer, inspiring our next generation of conservationists.