Monday, April 1, 2013

Lake Katharine State Nature Preserve

At 2,000+ acres, Lake Katharine is among the largest nature preserves in Ohio. In addition to being large in size, this great natural area is spectacular in natural scope. Take a look:

Jennifer says, "I love nature like I love life itself":

Steve says, "Look, some of the native conifers we read about in Wild Ohio!" From left to right it appears we have Shortleaf pine, Virginia pine and Eastern Hemlock.  

Jennifer soaks up the sun while enjoying the flow of water in Salt Creek.

One of our favorite wildflowers: Rattlesnake Plantain. It's in the orchid family, which is always cool, but check out those deep green leaves checkered with white. No matter how many times we stumble across this one we always exclaim, "Look, Rattlesnake plantain!" 

When you see large rock exposures coupled with deep ravines in Ohio you might begin your geologic ponderings with, "Hmmm, this country was probably not glaciated." Then consult your handy ecoregion map and conclude, "Yep, I'm in Jackson County which is entirely within the Allegheny Plateau, the only part of Ohio that has not been glaciated." If there's a smartphone app for that, we'd like to see it!

 Jennifer and Steve say, "Just try and keep us indoors!"

Lake Katharine spillway:

Lake Katharine:

Checking out the birds:

Some shots of the deep gorge cut by Salt Creek:

Whimsical vernal pool (yeah, like there are non-whimsical vernal pools):

A new tree for our dendrology life list: Umbrella magnolia. Check out those fang-like buds!

As usual, we are loath to leave these wonderful natural areas but thankful for those brave and insightful people who took the road-less-travelled and protected (rather than exploited) such beauty and majesty. Thank you to Edwin A. Jones and James J. McKitterick, wherever you are!


  1. Sure hope there's no shale under this gem.

  2. HI J&S...Enjoyed your hiking, and nature trip...and my favorite thing is the Rattlesnake Plantian!! I found a patch of it years ago in the edge of the woods in back of my property ..I was so excited, but over time it just disappeared,and I have not found any since :(
    That's a great picture of the two "nature nuts" ; ) I say that with much respect for you both LOL!!
    I also love that header, fabulous work...did Steve do that ? ; )

    1. Grace- I found this gem of needlework at the local thrift shop. Wow! I am working on some socks and little crocheted owls at the moment. We LOVE being nature nuts. :) You are one too and that makes us happy! jennifer & steve

  3. Beautiful. Love your quotes:)

    The new banner is fabulous!

    1. Thanks sister! Steve likes to make up fun quotes. :)

  4. We stopped at Killdeer Plains a few days ago, and the spring peepers were loud, even in late morning. The sound made me think of your comments a few weeks back.

    1. Hey Carla and Bill! Hope you both are well. The spring peepers, chorus frogs and wood frogs have been calling again around here lately. It seems like it will just increase towards the weekend with the warming temps. YAY!


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