Open to the Public
Cherry Creek meanders through woodlands and pastures, carving a path through a rural landscape before emptying into the Delaware River. Along the way, the creek hugs the Kittatinny Ridge, a globally important flyway for birds of prey, including bald eagles and broad-winged hawks. During autumn, visitors hike the Appalachian Trail to Wolf Rocks or another scenic vista to witness the raptors and numerous neo-tropical migratory birds during their annual migration. Cherry Valley is home to 85 rare species and habitats, including the federally listed bog turtle, northeastern bulrush and dwarf wedge mussel.
The Nature Conservancy has worked for decades to protect Cherry Valley’s clean water and critical natural resources. A large part of this work has focused on efforts to establish a national wildlife refuge at Cherry Valley. With a consortium of local organizations and landowners organized by the Friends of Cherry Valley, the Conservancy succeeded in helping this vision become a reality in late 2008, when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approved the refuge — establishing a boundary that encompasses 20,466 acres in Monroe and Northampton counties in the Pocono Mountains. Within this boundary, the Service may now acquire, from willing sellers, lands to be included in the National Wildlife Refuge System.
According to the refuge plan, the Service may purchase the lands outright or may enter into conservation easements, which protect the land from future development but allow the owners to continue to use the land. Property owners are showing strong interest and federal dollars have become available from the Land and Water Conservation Fund to acquire land for the refuge.
Residential development and non-native, invasive plants, including purple loosestrife, phragmites and Japanese knotweed.
- Protected several properties totaling over 2,000 acres through purchase or conservation easements.
- Completed an inventory of plants, animals and habitats in 2008.
- Helped to create the Cherry Valley National Wildlife Refuge, established in December 2008.
- Helped the United States Fish & Wildlife Service acquire properties, including the first two refuge properties.
- Meeting with area landowners to advise them about conservation options.
- Working to increase federal funding for the National Wildlife Refuge System.
- Planning joint land protection opportunities with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.
- Working with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service and Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission on habitat restoration and management.
- Pursuing additional land acquisition opportunities to expand the refuge and establish a wildlife corridor that links the area to nearby protected lands.
Friends of Cherry Valley, Monroe County, Pocono Heritage Land Trust, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, Brodhead Watershed Association, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and local municipalities.
The Nature Conservancy
P.O. Box 55 Long Pond Road
Long Pond, Pennsylvania 18334
(570) 643-7922 (phone)
(570) 643-7925 (fax)
Monroe and Northampton counties
Take a scenic drive from the Delaware Water Gap to Saylorsburg. Hike to Wolf Rocks, a renowned segment of the Appalachian Trail. Pursue additional recreational pastimes including golfing, horseback riding, hunting and fishing.
What You’ll See
Hillside seeps and limestone fens. Bat hibernaculum. Raptors, including bald eagles, osprey and broad-wing hawks. Breeding population of cerulean warblers and other neo-tropical migratory birds. Federally threatened bog turtle, and federally endangered Northeastern bulrush and dwarf wedge mussel. State endangered grass-of-Parnassus. Spreading globeflower. American eel.
Properties in Cherry Valley are not open to the public due to the fragile nature of the habitat. Contact the Conservancy’s office in Long Pond to inquire about visiting the area.