Springvale Wet Prairie, SNA #547 (151/675)

Springvale Wet Prairie includes a wet prairie, sedge meadow, and small fen on a site bisected by Duck Creek east of Pardeeville.  There are no great parking options as even the roads here have narrow shoulders and steep ditches on the sides.  Luckily for me, CTH I was closed at the time and so I…

Newark Road Prairie, SNA #113 (144/675)

Newark Road Prairie features a wet-mesic prairie found in southern Rock County.  A grassy pull-off with room for perhaps 2 cars is located on the north side of Beloit Newark Road, just west of the intersection with Knutson Road. From the pull-off, a trail of sorts winds its way through the prairie.  I am not…

Whitefish Dunes, SNA #175 (117/675)

Whitefish Dunes features the largest landscape of sand dunes along the Great Lakes.  Found within Whitefish Dunes State Park, both active and stabilized dunes are home to various stages of succession with those dunes further from the lake being more wooded and stabilized.  Parking is available near the park office.  From there, we walked north along…

Toft Point, SNA #57 (115/675)

Toft Point contains a wide range of natural communities on a peninsula between Moonlight Bay and Baileys Harbor.  To reach the site, take the access lane off of Ridges Road, about 1.5 miles east of the intersection of STH 57 and Ridges Road.  A parking area and trailhead can be found there.  Alternatively, continue on…

Mud Lake, SNA #125 (112/675)

Mud Lake features a shallow drainage lake surrounded by a sedge meadow.  It is one of 6 SNA’s with ‘Mud Lake’ in the name and one of 2 SNA’s with 3 owners.  There is room to park at dead-ends on Lime Kiln and Birch Roads, on the north and east sides of the site, respectively….

North Bay, SNA #381 (110/675)

North Bay features a long list of natural communities including various forest and wetland types (see table below) and certainly is more diverse than its name implies.  Such is the case sometimes with SNA names.  At times a site may be named X Lake and it really is just the lake.  Other times it is much…

Meridian Park, SNA #544 (105/675)

Meridian Park features an interesting collection of natural communities approximately equidistant between the equator and the North Pole (hence the name).  It is accessible from a wayside on the west side of Hwy 57.  It is an official Door County Park, though there is little more than you’d find at a smaller wayside and scant…

Milwaukee River Tamarack Lowlands & Dundee Kame, SNA #256 (92/674)

Milwaukee River Tamarack Lowlands & Dundee Kame features a variety of wetland communities and several glacial kames surrounding a stretch of the Milwaukee River in the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.  It is one of 11 SNA’s found with this forest unit.  There are several ways to access this SNA and I would…

Butler Lake & Flynn’s Spring, SNA #257 (89/674)

Butler Lake features the namesake lake and spring, as well as a short segment of the Parnell Esker.  It is one of 11 SNA’s found within the Northern Unit of the Kettle Moraine State Forest.  Access is easy via a large parking area at a bend in Butler Lake Road.  There is a boat landing…

Lulu Lake, SNA #138 (86/674)

Lulu Lake is an amazing mosaic of natural communities straddling the Walworth-Waukesha County line.  Several parking areas are located around the property including on CTH E, Lulu Lake Road, and Nature Road.  Trails lead throughout the site.  The SNA is owned approximately 2/3 by the DNR and 1/3 by The Nature Conservancy.  Both entities own…

Bluff Creek, SNA #271 (83/674)

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)…

Pat Shay Lake, SNA #446 (72/674)

Pat Shay Lake protects stands of old-growth hemlock and other mixed forests along with a bog, sedge meadow, and the eponymous lake.  Access is available from several points along Butternut Lake and Knapp Roads.  The easiest access to the lake is from the latter.  The Hidden Lakes Trail within the CNNF skirts the southeastern edge…