Smith-Reiner Drumlin Prairie features two drumlins that contain dry prairie remnants in eastern Dane County. Located just south of CTH PQ (also known as Prairie Queen Road) and east of STH 73 on Clearview Road, there is a small gravel parking area on the west side of the road. From that point, an access lane leads 1/2 mile west to the drumlins.
I first visited Smith-Reiner Drumlin Prairie in May 2013 and it has quickly become one of my most visited site (12 visits), second only to Pleasant Valley Conservancy with 18 visits, and is firmly in Josh’s Top 10 SNA’s. There really is no bad time to visit the drumlins from April through September. American pasqueflower and bird’s-foot highlight the early spring wildflowers. Flowering spurge, lead plant, and sunflowers appear after that and transition to an unbelievable flourish of cylindrical and rough blazing stars in mid-late August which then gives way to the beautiful asters and goldenrods leading into September. Smith-Reiner is the site of intensive management and restoration by The Prairie Enthusiasts, of which I am a member and occasional volunteer at this site. Between the two drumlins is an old field which has recently been planted with prairie species. Once part of a vast 7,000 acre prairie, the drumlins were the only local pieces that maintained prairie species as agriculture was abandoned here due to the thin, gravelly soils that are characteristic of these glacial formations. I cannot encourage strongly enough a visit to Smith-Reiner, particularly during the amazing blazing star display in mid-late August. The Prairie Enthusiasts lead occasional hikes here as well, which I also highly recommend. See you on the drumlins!
More of my photos (and full-res) from Smith-Reiner Drumlin Prairie can be viewed here.
400 more blog posts to go! Well, actually a few more than that remain; counting SNA’s delisted since I started and a few SNA’s to be designated, the current total is 687, though hopefully, that will increase!
If you would like to help support this project, please consider a donation. There are many SNA’s yet to visit and even more to revisit and I ultimately plan to put this together in the form of a book. Thank you!
|Natural Communities / Geology||Dry Prairie, Drumlin|
|Parking||Parking Area (gravel)|
|Easy to Find||Yes|
|Best Seen By||Foot|
|Ownership||The Prairie Enthusiasts; More info: Wisconsin DNR|