Buck Creek State Park–West Lake Access from OH-4
eBird Bar Charts by Season
Ohio Birding Day Hike
Buck Creek State Park Trails
Tips for birding West Lake Access from OH-4
The West Lake Access is a quarter mile paved trail that leads straight to the west side of C.J. Brown Reservoir from which many waterfowl have been seen. It is maintained by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and has a sign at the parking area immediately off of OH-4. There is also a good birding trail running through woods north and south from the paved path. The trail empties onto a gravel beach that extends several hundred yards in both directions on the reservoir shore. It is helpful to have a spotting scope to view birds on the reservoir.
From Dan Kempf
Tips for birding Buck Creek State Park
Buck Creek State Park near Springfield in Clark County is one of the Ohio eBird hotspots with the highest number of bird species reported in the state! This state park is fairly compact and is entirely in Clark County. It has been well birded over the years by several birders who view birds on the C. J. Brown Reservoir from various vantage points and use the general hotspot to report these checklists. If you visit this state park and view birds from several locations, please use the general hotspot to report those checklists. In addition, there are several hotspots which may be used when you are birding trails on the east or west sides of the reservoir. The “Northeast Lake Access” hotspot is located at a parking area off Grant Road. You may park there and walk to the northeast corner of the reservoir. This location can, in some years, have shorebird habitat during migration and is often a place where the lake first has open water in the early spring.
About Buck Creek State Park
The natural features of Buck Creek State Park can be attributed to the effects of glaciers which receded from Ohio over 12,000 years ago. Low hills called moraines can be seen in the area where glaciers halted for extended periods of time and left deposits of gravel and sand. Old river valleys were filled by these deposits where numerous springs now well up through the sand and gravel. The nearby city of Springfield is named for the many springs seeping up from the broad meadows. The springs account for the many bogs and fens in Clark and Champaign counties of which Cedar Bog is probably the best known.
These wet areas harbor an assortment of rare and unusual plants including round-leaved sundew and horned bladderwort. The spotted turtle, a state endangered animal, is found in the area. The northernmost region of the park is an excellent area to observe waterfowl. The shallow waters provide a stopover for thousands of migrating ducks. Relatively rare songbirds of open meadows are also present including dickcissels, bobolinks, and Henslow sparrows.
From Buck Creek State Park webpage