Ohio

Snow Lake Preserve

This 272-acre preserve features an ancient kettle lake within the heart of one of Ohio's finest remaining glacial wetlands.


The 272-acre Snow Lake Preserve, located in Geauga County, includes 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.  It is located adjacent to the southern boundary of the Conservancy's 376-acre Lucia S. Nash Preserve (a National Natural Landmark) and just a few miles southeast of Punderson State Park.

The preserve is part of a 20,000-acre wetland complex of boggy bottomland know as the Cuyahoga Wetlands - an area that hasn't been drastically altered since the last glacial sheet receded about 10,000 years ago.  The area is considered one of the finest remaining glacial wetlands in Ohio.  The complex also includes the Geauga Park District's Burton Wetlands Nature Preserve and Fern Lake, which is owned by the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.

The property was purchased with help from Ohio EPA's Water Resource Restoration Sponsor Program in cooperation with the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District (NEORSD).  Ohio EPA's program encourages communities to pair water treatment infrastructure improvement with companion projects that restore wetland and stream habitat and control runoff.

The property is adjacent to a patchwork of 18,000 acres the City of Akron owns and manages in the Cuyahoga Wetlands area 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 Snow Lake and other nearby natural areas.

Snow Lake was part of the Western Reserve granted to Oliver Snow, a Revolutionary War veteran.  It was developed in the early 1900s as a hunting and fishing club and was previously owned by a founding family for more than six decades.

WHAT TO SEE

Plants

  • Water avens
  • White water crowfoot
  • Arrow arum
  • Bur-reed
  • Yellow water lily

Birds

  • Trumpeter swan
  • Sandhill crane
  • Mallard duck
  • Wood duck
  • Bald eagle
  • Osprey
  • Wild turkey
  • Great blue heron
  • Green heron

Mammals

  • Whitetail deer
  • Beaver
  • Otter
  • Raccoon
  • Mink
  • Fox

Reptiles

  • Spotted turtle
  • Northern water snake
  • Snapping turtle

WHAT THE CONSERVANCY HAS DONE / IS DOING

  • Developing a plan to open the property to the public, likely in 2018
  • Addressing the threat of invasive species, such as phragmites, narrow-leaved cattails and reed canary grass

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