A dark red pitcher plant flower in bloom hangs from a long green stem.
Pitcher Plant A pitcher plant (sarracenia purpurea) blooms at the Tannersville Cranberry Bog Preserve in Pennsylvania. © George C. Gress/TNC

Places We Protect

Tannersville Cranberry Bog Preserve


Known locally as “The Cranberry,” this geological remnant of a long-ago ice age was one of TNC’s first preserves in Pennsylvania.

Standing out in vivid contrast to the surrounding Pocono Mountains landscape, Tannersville Cranberry Bog provides a snapshot of colder times. Thousands of years ago, a large glacial lake occupied the space of what has since become a thick soup of peat moss.

Affectionately known locally as “The Cranberry,” Tannersville Cranberry Bog is ingrained in the local community and culture, inspiring wonder among students, educators, scientists, nature lovers and photographers who visit each year. Of special interest are some of North America’s most beautiful native orchids, including rose pogonia and the state-endangered heart-leaved twayblade.

While the ice and lake have long receded, the unique ecosystem that remains today serves as the southernmost low elevation boreal bog along the eastern seaboard. It represents an intricate transformation that took place over the millennia and would be impossible to replace if destroyed.

The Tannersville Cranberry Bog Preserve is one of TNC's first nature preserves in Pennsylvania. The preserve in managed in partnership with the Kettle Creek Environmental Education Center who provide educational opportunities for the local community.

Over the years, careful stewardship by TNC and partners including Kettle Creek Environmental Education Center, Pocono Township, the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and a local volunteer stewardship committee has yielded great returns as the bog soaks up rain and runoff like a giant sponge—cleansing water and controlling pollution throughout the Pocono Creek watershed.

Because of its fragile nature, the bog itself can be visited only during regularly scheduled walks conducted by the Monroe County Conservation District's Kettle Creek Environmental Education Center. Private walks are available for groups upon request.

Public access is always permitted on the North Wood and the Fern Ridge trails. A donation to support management efforts is requested.

What to see: Plants

Visitors will find plants such as calla lilies, gold thread and carnivorous sundew and pitcher plants, as well as native orchids such as rose pogonia and the state endangered heart-leaved twayblade. Other endangered plants include bog rosemary and Labrador tea. Shrubs such as leather leaf, sheep laurel and swamp azalea can also be found here.

What to see: Animals

Black bear, river otter, bobcat, beaver, porcupines, mink, wild turkey and snowshoe hare can be found here. Canada warbler, wood thrush, scarlet tanager, golden-winged warbler, eastern towhee and whip-poor-will have also been spoted at the preserve.

Watch: Enjoy a Virtual Tour of Tannersville Cranberry Bog Preserve

Walk Through the Tannersville Bog Enjoy a virtual tour of the Tannersville Cranberry Bog led by Kettle Creek Environmental Education Center.

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