Desonier State Nature Preserve

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Athens County

Desonier State Nature Preserve
Coordinates: 39.2364755, -81.8684965
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Ohio Birding Day Hike

Desonier State Nature Preserve Trail
Oak Ridge Trail – 2.2 miles
There is a 2.2-mile loop trail, the Oak Ridge Trail, circling the property, with a short side spur on top of the ridge. This preserve is one of the few places where the meadow spikemoss, Selaginella apoda, may be found growing.

A description with map of a hike on the Oak Ridge Trail is on the AllTrails website.

About Desonier State Nature Preserve
+ Large wooded area
+ Summer wildflowers
+ Butterflies, songbirds, and waterfowl
+ This site features a 2-mile trail; parking is available in front of the gate.

The Marie J. Desonier State Nature Preserve encompasses a variety of habitats typical of Appalachian Ohio. The area is diverse in vegetation and ranges from various successional stages to mature forests in the deep ravines and on the steep hillsides. The area is dissected by Jordan Run, a tributary of the Hocking River, and has steep topography, varying from 680 to 900 feet in elevation.

Large beech and oak trees are found in the cool moist ravines while the drier uplands are dominated by oak-hickory forests, typical of the region. Due to the diversity of the landscape, a large variety of ferns and wildflowers abound. Some of the more interesting plants include weak aster, green adder’s mouth orchid, and Virginia meadow-beauty. Mistletoe, a parasitic plant on trees, has also been reported from this preserve.

The most notable landscape feature is a large pond created by beaver, complete with many trees bearing the marks of these industrious animals and a stick-built den. The pond, which stretches for several acres, draws a variety of migratory waterfowl.
From Desonier State Nature Preserve webpage

No restroom facilities.