Cassville Bluffs – Roe Unit features dry prairie remants and oak savanna along a bluff overlooking the Mississippi River in southwestern Grant County. Parking is at the end of the cul-de-sac on Sand Lake Lane. From there, a trail leads through the forest, across a stream, up the backside of the bluff before petering out in an agricultural field. Cross this field to reach the forest and meander through to reach the prairie and savanna portions of the site. The ‘Roe Unit’ part of the name suggests that additional units are part of the natural area, but thus far I have found no evidence of that. In most places online, this site is referred to as simply ‘Cassville Bluffs’, so ‘Roe Unit’ may be a relic (perhaps there used to be (an) additional parcel(s) that are no longer a part of the natural area).
The visit to Cassville Bluffs was the last stop on a long day. After parking, we made our way through the forest and eventually followed an old access road uphill leading to an old field. Across this field was another strip of forest followed by the prairie and savanna remnants on the edge of the bluff. At this western edge of the openings, the remnants were not of great quality. Prairie phlox, wild columbine, and hoary puccoon were all that was observed in terms of flowering species. In reviewing the maps in preparation for this post, further exploration to the west would have been recommended as there is located the larger and more open areas. Being the end of the day with fatigue setting in and a lack of boundaries on the GPS unit, we ended up heading back. This is definitely a site I would like to revisit with a bit more time and knowledge in tow.
More of my photos (and full-res) from Cassville Bluffs – Roe Unit can be viewed here.
|Natural Communities / Geology||Dry Prairie, Bluff, Oak Savanna|
|Easy to Find||No|
|Best Seen By||Foot|