Olson Oak Woods, SNA #157 (26/674)

Olson Oak Woods represents a quintessential forest in the state of Wisconsin.  It contains many white and black oaks as well as a mixture of black cherry, bur oak, red oak, hickory, elm, and basswood.  According to the DNR, open-growth oaks dating from the 1750’s and multiple-stemmed oaks from the 1840’s are evidence of former savanna conditions as well as the occurrence of fire at the site.  There are numerous ridges and swales that lend topography to the site.  There is a rather large parking area from which emanates various hiking trails.  The site is owned in part by the DNR but also by the Madison Metropolian School District, so I surmise that it has education purposes such as field trips and perhaps ecological studies.  From my perspective, it is a fantastic site for spring ephermerals and fall colors.  I have come across a massive group of turkey vultures as well as a very ornery heron rookery.  So stop on by sometime and have a relaxing stroll on the trail.  One last tidbit, this was one of the locations that I was filmed at for my appearance re: SNA’s on PBS.  They wanted to go somewhere close and so on a rainy April evening out we went, all the while with me explaining that it would be rather unlikely that I would be out taking photographs on a night like that.

More of my photos from Olson Oak Woods can be viewed here.

Additional Information

SNA # 157
County Dane
Parking Parking Area
Trails Yes
Easy to Find Yes
Best Seen By Foot
Marked Boundaries Yes
Ownership Wisconsin DNR
Located Within na
Dates Visited 7.4.09 / 2.27.10 / 4.10.10 / 5.12.14

Dane County

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