Bluff Creek is another one of my favorite SNA’s and another smorgasboard of natural communities. It consists of two parcels and can be accessed via several points including a pull-off on CTH P, typically populated by fisherman, off of Hi-Lo Road (bring your rubber boots), and off of Esterly Road. The Ice Age Trail (IAT) passes through the eastern unit, providing another access route. Bluff Creek is one of 7 SNA’s in the Southern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest and one of 27 through which the IAT passes.
I have explored Bluff Creek 3 different times from 3 different access points. Back in 2010, I explored the area of the creek itself near its intersection with CTH P. Over 5 years later, I returned to the same parcel, but approaching from the southeast through wet prairie and sedge meadow. A few months later, I made it to the eastern parcel to explore the headwaters of the creek with its morainal seeps and also visited the prairie and fen areas near CTH P again. As mentioned, the IAT does pass through the eastern parcel, though that portion is mostly forested. The IAT crosses an power-line ROW, however, which one could take northwest toward the headwaters. I have found this to be a wonderful site every time I have visited and look forward to more trips here in the future.
More of my photos (and full-res) from Bluff Creek can be viewed here.
|Natural Communities / Geology
||Creek, Spring, Sedge Meadow, Fen, Southern Dry-Mesic Forest, Wet-Mesic Prairie|
|Parking||Parking Areas (gravel), Roadside|
|Easy to Find||Yes|
|Best Seen By||Foot|
|Located Within||Kettle Moraine State Forest – Southern Unit|
|Dates Visited||5.2.10 / 7.19.15 / 9.13.15|