Places We Protect

Lucia S. Nash Preserve

Ohio

Clouds reflected in the surface of a lake surrounded by trees in fall color.
Snow Lake in Fall Located at Lucia S. Nash Preserve in Geauga County, Ohio. © Randall Schieber

The 650-acre preserve features an ancient kettle lake within the heart of one of Ohio’s finest remaining glacial wetlands.

Overview

Description

The 650-acre Lucia S. Nash Preserve, located in Geauga County, includes Snow Lake—a small kettle lake surrounded by emergent marsh, sedge meadow and shrub swamp. The low hills around the lake support upland forest with scattered vernal pools and swamp forests. The preserve also protects the only remaining old-growth white pine boreal fen in Ohio.

Lucia S. Nash Preserve, formerly known as White Pine Bog, is part of a larger 20,000-acre wetland complex of boggy bottomland known as the Cuyahoga Wetlands—an area considered one of the finest remaining glacial wetlands in Ohio. The complex also includes the Geauga Park District’s Burton Wetlands Nature Preserve and The Cleveland Museum of Natural History’s Fern Lake. Read more about Snow Lake and the surrounding lands that are considered to be the crown jewel of the Cuyahoga Wetlands.

The property is adjacent to a patchwork of 18,000 acres the City of Akron owns and manages to protect the city’s drinking water reservoirs downstream. The 300,000 customers who rely on Akron’s municipal water system benefit from the protection of the Lucia S. Nash Preserve and other nearby natural areas.

Access

OPEN TO THE PUBLIC

Hours

Preserve and trail are open dawn to dusk, April through November.

Wheelchair Accessible

The gravel portion of the Barbara A. Lipscomb Snow Lake Trail at the Lucia S. Nash Preserve is wheelchair accessible.

Highlights

This preserve offers hiking, birding, wildlife watching, native plants, a lake overlook, and nearly two miles of easy hiking trails that allows visitors to explore the preserve's key natural features.

Size

650 acres

Explore our work in this region

Photos from Lucia S. Nash Preserve

The preserve is home to a variety of habitats to explore including marshes, shrub swamps, vernal pools, a kettle lake and more.

Lush greenery surrounding Snow Lake under a blue sky.
A person rowing in a boat on Snow Lake.
Sun shining through tall trees surrounding a leaf-covered path in a forest.
A path surrounded by tall grasses and shrubs leading to Snow Lake.
Green yellow pond lilies growing at the edge of Snow Lake.
A vertical shot of a White Pine tree.
Orange chicken of the woods fungus growing up the side of a tree.
Snow Lake surrounded by autumn-colored trees.
Lush green forest floor.
A leaf-covered trail surrounded by tall trees.

Visit

  • What to See

    A variety of flora and fauna call the Lucia S. Nash Preserve home.

    • Plants: rare tamarack-hardwood bog community, grass-pink orchid, necklace sedge, early coral-root, bunchberry, bog bedstraw, butternut, marsh spear-grass, coarse smartweed, Hill's pondweed, bog willow, white water crowfoot, arrow arum, yellow water lily
    • Birds: bald eagle, hermit thrush, marsh wren, sedge wren, cerulean warbler, least bittern, Virginia rail, Canada warbler, yellow-bellied sapsucker, trumpeter swan, sandhill crane, wood duck, osprey, wild turkey, great blue heron
    • Mammals: beaver, otter, raccoon, mink, fox
    • Reptiles: spotted turtle, Northern water snake, snapping turtle
  • Trail Information

    The Barbara A. Lipscomb Snow Lake Trail, named in honor of a former trustee and lifelong supporter of TNC, includes nearly two miles of easy hiking trails from which to explore the preserve’s key features, including:

    Snow Lake

    Keep an eye out for blue-winged teal, common merganser, lesser scaup and other waterfowl during spring and fall migrations. The rare lake chubsucker and other fish thrive beneath the surface, while floating aquatic plants, like the white water-crowfoot, grow along the shallow margin. River otter and beaver are also found here.

    Wetlands

    In spring and summer, look for sandhill cranes among the cattails and grasses. Fragrant water lilies and spatterdock grow in the wettest areas, while red maples, yellow birch, speckled alder and swamp rose take root in shrub swamps. Spring-fed fens support the rare tamarack tree, Ohio’s only native conifer.

    Vernal Pools

    In spring, look for these seasonal pools, which provide excellent breeding habitat for frogs and salamanders and support a variety of native vegetation, like swamp white oak, pin oak and buttonbush shrub. Late February ushers in Ohio’s first blooms with the skunk cabbage’s strange, red, hood-shaped flowers.

    Allow 2-3 hours for this trail, so there will be time to stop and observe the lake from the overlook and any wildlife sitings; listen to the birds and study the plant communities. Trail length is 1.8 miles.

  • Preserve Guidelines

    Our vision is of a world where people and nature thrive together. The Nature Conservancy encourages people of all ages, races, ethnicities, religions, gender expressions, and abilities to visit our preserves and has a zero-tolerance policy for racism and discrimination.

    The following activities are NOT permitted at The Lucia S. Nash Preserve:

    • Biking and mountain biking
    • Camping
    • Driving an ATV or off-road vehicle
    • Cooking or camp fires
    • Horseback riding
    • Hunting
    • Picking flowers, berries, nuts or mushrooms
    • Removing any part of the natural landscape
    • Snowmobiling

    Please note that there are no facilities of any kind on the trail.

    Lucia S. Nash Preserve is pet-friendly. Leashed pets (leash no longer than 6 feet) are welcome on the trails. In order to protect the delicate habitats, please make sure to clean up after your pets.

    Use of other power-driven mobility devices (OPDMDs) is permitted only when the preserve is open to the public and only on the gravel trail (not on boardwalk or earthen trail), cannot be gas powered, speed cannot exceed 8 miles per hour and width cannot exceed 36 inches. For more information about the use of (OPDMDs) at our open preserves, please visit our OPDMD guidelines.

Lucia S. Nash Preserve Virtual Naturalist Hike (9:44) Explore the Barbara A. Lipscomb Snow Lake Trail at the Lucia S. Nash Preserve in Northeast Ohio. TNC Ohio Director of Land Protection, Terry Seidel, walks with you along the trail, discussing the history of the property and pointing out the beauty and natural features of the preserve.

Current Conservation Work

  • The preserve and the new trail opened to the public in summer 2020.
  • In late 2019 and early 2020, improvements were made to the property and a new trail was constructed and dedicated to Barbara A. Lipscomb, a long-time supporter and trustee of The Nature Conservancy.
  • In 2019 a new parking lot was constructed and plans for a trail began.
  • In 2017 the Conservancy completed a 272-acre acquisition that grew the size of the preserve to 650 acres.
  • Addressing the threat of invasive species, such as phragmites, narrow-leaved cattails and reed canary grass.

Find More Places We Protect

The Nature Conservancy owns nearly 1,500 preserves covering more than 2.5 million acres across all 50 states. These lands protect wildlife and natural systems, serve as living laboratories for innovative science and connect people to the natural world.

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