February 9, 2013: Cincinnati Nature Center.
Cincinnati Nature Center is a non-profit education organization. Its Rowe Woods location in Milford, Ohio spans 1,025 acres (including 65 acres of old growth forest) and offers more than 16 miles of hiking trails winding through the region’s natural habitats of eastern deciduous forest, fields, streams and ponds. Its website is at http://www.cincynature.org/. Jim Michael will coordinate this trip and Dave Helm will be our guide. We will leave Oxford from the former WalMart parking lot (on Locust Street next to McDonald’s) at 7:00 a.m. and return to Oxford in the afternoon. For those wishing to join the group at the Center, projected arrival time is about 8:00 a.m. Admission is $8. Pack a lunch.
March 16, 2013: Mount Airy Forest.
The Mount Airy Forest, established in 1911, was one of the earliest urban reforestation project in the United States, and is the largest park in Cincinnati’s park system. It covers an impressive 1,471 acres and includes natural areas, planned landscapes, buildings, structures, and landscape features. The numerous hiking trails, bridle paths, walls, gardens, pedestrian bridges, and various other improvements within Mount Airy Forest reflect the ambitious park planning and development that took place in Cincinnati in the early-to-mid-20th century. The once-barren land now includes 700 acres of reforested hardwoods, 200 acres of forested evergreens, 269 acres of wetlands, 170 acres of meadows, and a 120-acre arboretum. Sam Fitton will lead the trip. We will leave Oxford from the former WalMart parking lot (on Locust Street next to McDonald’s) at 7:00 a.m. and return to Oxford in the afternoon. For those wishing to join the group at the park, projected arrival time is about 7:45 a.m. Pack a lunch.
Sunday, April 14, 2013: Warbler Walk at Hunter/Huffmeier Property.
NOTE: The date of this outing, originally set for Saturday, has been changed to Sunday, April 14 due to a scheduling conflict.
This will be another delightful visit to the rural Indiana property of our hosts, Kathy Hunter and Ron Huffmeier. The land, located just to the west of Brookville Lake, features stunning old-growth forest along with open grassy areas and lovely streams. We are sure to find a nice variety of birds while walking through this attractive setting. Pack a lunch, and we will dine on the deck of Kathy and Ron’s home overlooking the woods. We will leave Oxford from the new WalMart parking lot (on US 27 / College Corner Pike, north of town) at 7:00 a.m. and return to Oxford after lunch.
May 4, 2013: Boone County Cliffs State Nature Preserve.
Boone County Cliffs State Nature Preserve derives its name from the 20- to 50-foot cliffs of conglomerate rock that rise above the valley slopes of a small tributary to Middle Creek in Boone County, Kentucky. The cliffs originated from outwash materials from Kansan-age glaciers deposited 700,000 years ago. They are considered to be among the finest examples of glacial deposits in Kentucky. The preserve features mature woodland on steep hillsides. The forest is characterized as calcareous mesophytic and consists of many species including sugar maple, basswood, beech, white oak, white ash, and slippery elm. The preserve is home to uncommon salamander species as well as a great diversity of both nesting and migratory songbirds. Sam Fitton will be our guide. We will leave Oxford from the former WalMart parking lot (on Locust Street next to McDonald’s) at 6:30 a.m. and return to Oxford in the late afternoon. For those wishing to join the group at the Preserve, projected arrival time is about 8:00 a.m. Pack a lunch.
June 1, 2013: Four-Mile Creek Metropark.
The Davidson Woods (formerly part of the Hueston Farm & Forest Preserve) are part of the Four Mile Creek MetroPark within Hanover Township, Butler County. Davidson Woods is a mature secondary woods dominated by a beech/maple forest containing 468 acres. In the spring, a plethora of wild-flowers carpets the forest floor. Many spring warblers and flycatchers, both migrant and resident, can be found in the forest. Hardy Eshbaugh will lead this trip, which will leave Oxford from at the former WalMart parking lot (on Locust Street next to McDonald’s) at 6:30 a.m. Parking is very limited at the site so we will carpool to the (gated) park entrance, located at the intersection of Hogue and Gardner Roads. We plan to be back in Oxford by 1:00 p.m. The number of participants is limited, so participants must pre-register on the MetroParks of Butler County Web site. A motor vehicle permit (free to Butler County residents) is required for Park entrance. For more information please refer to the home page for MetroParks of Butler County (http://www.yourmetroparks.net).