Nature Preserves Near Pokagon State Park
Nature Preserves Near Pokagon State Park
From the Book:
Pokagon Indiana State Park
Greetings, today I will discuss several of the wildlife refuges visitors to Greetings, today I will discuss several of the wildlife refuges visitors to Pokagon State Park can visit while in the area. The first one I will talk about is the Wild Winds Buffalo Preserve.
Visitors to this preserve will find approximately 250 buffalo roaming over 400 acres. Tours of the preserve are every hour on the hour as the guide takes visitors among the bison to see them close up. Calving season begins in May and in September the bulls enter rut. The buffalo move through seven fields as they migrate. My wife and I visited this preserve in May 2021, just after the cows had finished calving. The friendly guide had a wealth of knowlege about the animals and allowed extra time for me to photograph them. He moved in fairly close on a couple of occasions for a close up view of them.
Wild Winds Buffalo Preserve
6975 N Ray Rd,
Fremont, IN 46737
Loon Lake Nature Preserve
Located northwest of Angola, Indiana in Steuben County, the 99 acre Loon Lake Nature Preserve is on County Road 325 West about two miles north of its intersection with US 20. There is a public access site to Loon Lake on the north end of the lake accessed from County Road County Road 100 N. Access to this is from county Road 200 W, which intersects US 20, west of Angola.
Loon Lake Nature Preserve protects a variety of wetland environments containing about a dozen rare wetland plants. Public access is difficult, however there is trail and boardwalk that visitors can use to visit portions of it. Rare plants include purple bladderwort, Robbin’s spikerush and cuckoo flower. The Preserve also includes an area of marl prairie. Marl prairie is a type of wet prairie in which water seeps slowly away and does not drain quickly. Common to the Everglades region in Florida, this type of prairie contains mostly low growing vegetation.
Marion’s Woods Nature Preserve
Managed by ACRES Land Trust, this 19.5 acre nature preserve exists due to the efforts of the organization and the Eberhardt family working to preserve the area. The nature preserve is a rare treasure because few properties of this sort are located within a city limits. The preserve protects an Oak/hickory forest and includes several wetland depressions. The preserve is two blocks from the Bicycle Trail. ACRES Trust named the preserve after Marion Eberhardt. The pleasant, easy to hike one half mile loop presents the hiker with a multitude of spring wildflowers.
Marion Eberhardt (March 20, 1925 – September 7, 2010)
Native to South Bend, Indiana, she was born as Marion Williams. She grew up in Lansing, Michigan and attended Michigan State University. After she graduated she took a job teaching economics at Petoskey, Michigan. She met Arthur Eberhardt while he was visiting his sister in Petoskey in 1948 while he was completing his electrical engineer class at Purdue. After meeting her, they became engaged and he would travel from Gary, Indiana to Petoskey to visit her. The couple married in 1949, after which they moved to Cedar Rapids, Iowa to take a job with Collin’s Radio. The couple would have three children.
Move to Angola
In 1852 the couple moved to Angola, Indiana after Arthur took a job teaching at Tri-State College (now Trine University. Over the years Marion and he constructed a log cabin in Michigan near the Manistee River using hand tools and started a picnic table business in their garage. They used logs they found in the swamp in Kalkaska County, Michigan to build the cabin. They also planted a nursery in their back yard where they planted tree seeds and nuts. They planted these along Angola’s streets and in many other places.
At Angola Marion operated a hand-made natural crafts business for several years, served for about 20 years as secretary of ACRES Land Trust and helped build a trail at McClue Nature Reserve in Steuben County. She also hosted sing-a-longs at Wing Haven Nature Preserve during the Christmas season. An avid outdoorswoman, she loved camping, hiking and gardening.
Marion’s Woods Nature Preserve in Angola, Indiana is named in honor of her.
805 Calvary Lane
Angola, IN 46703
Wing Haven Nature Preserve
Managed by ACRES Land Trust, this 250 acre + nature preserve includes a chain of lakes, marshes, oak-hickory forests and rolling meadows. Helen Swensen gifted this property to ACRES Land Trust. The staff uses her original 19th Century log structures for storage, a Visitor Center and events. Visitors will find a profusion of wildflowers, birds and other wildlife at the preserve. There are two parking lots, both accessed from County Road 400 N. The parking lots provide trailheads for a loop trail that runs through wetland areas and to Seven Sisters Lake.
180 W 400 N,
Angola, IN 46703
Marsh Lake Nature Preserve
Located adjacent to Trine State Recreation Area, this 103 acre nature preserve has a public boat access site on Feather Valley Road. Visitors wanting hiking access can use a parking lot located on County Road 100 E. There are no trails in the preserve. The public access site allows boats to access 849-acre Marsh Lake.
The area has a good population of wildlife and plants which include cattail marsh, sedge marsh, calcareous fen and shrub swamp. It also contains an extensive boreal-relict stand of tamarack and yellow birch trees. Common species here include skunk cabbage, marsh marigold, red maple, and red-osier dogwood.
For more information, call or write:
Marsh Lake Wildlife Refuge
Division of Fish and Wildlife
402 W Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 46204.
This story is exerpted from my book, Pokagon Indiana State Park. you can find the book on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and other online book retailers. You also purchase the book on my web site, http://www.mossyfeetbooks.com. You can contact me at email@example.com
Thank you for listening
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