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This former tree farm was the first Forestry Legacy project in Kentucky; 96% of the land is forested with the remaining acreage seeded native warm season grass fields.   The forest is an important link in creating a contiguous large forest block that includes Bernheim Forest, the Crooked Creek Boy Scout Reservation, and the Fort Knox military installation.  This particular tract has a long history of logging dating back to the mid 1840's when the forest was rapidly cleared to feed an iron furnace in the 1840's.  It was then selected logged in the 1980's and in the 1990's some tracts were clear cut and at the present time white oak and chestnut oak account for 60% of the tree canopy.  The primary forest types found at the forest include a Virginia Pine forest dominated by the pine and black, scarlet, and chestnut oak, red cedar, and pignut hickory with an understory of blueberry and greenbrier.  The upper slopes are acidic sub-xeric forests with a canopy of chestnut, scarlet, black, and post oak, shagbark and mockernut hickory, red maple, black gum, and winged elm, with an understory of flowering dogwood, sassafras, red bud, red cedar, Carolina buckthorn, coralberry, downy serviceberry, blueberry, and greenbrier.  The slope and ravine forests are acidic mesophytic with a canopy of American beech, white and northern red oak, sugar maple, black cherry, red maple, tulip tree, and sweet gum with an understory of slippery elm, black gum, sassafras, shagbark hickory, hophornbeam, paw paw, and blueberry .  These forests have a fairly rich spring wildflower display of rue-anenome, jack in pulpit, mouse ear chickweed, spring beauty, twin leaf, scrambled eggs, violet wood sorrel, Jacobs ladder, stone crop, Solomon seal, wild blue phlox dwarf crested iris, and yellow star grass with one particular ravine that has a population of mountain laurel with the best wildflowers.  The riparian forests are dominated by hackberry, red maple, black walnut, honey locust, shagbark hickory, black locust, red cedar, sycamore with coral berry, flowering dogwood, redbud, giant cane, hazelnut, American hornbeam, rough leaf dogwood in the understory.  In some areas of the bottomland there are some small wet areas dominated by sedges, rushes, grasses, sensitive fern, cat tails, arrowhead, meadow pink, monkey flower, cardinal flower, boneset and joe pye weed, water plantain, meadow pink.  At least 198 plant species have been observed including one infrequent species, the butterfly pea.


Access:

 Open dawn to dusk for passive recreation including hiking, wildlife viewing, photography and hunting following statewide regulations, except that deer hunting is limited to archery and crossbow.  Trapping is available by permit only. You must park at one of 3 small parking areas, two of which are on the right (south) side of Crooked Creek Road and the third parking area is at KY733. An information kiosk (board) is at the first parking area.

Access Type: Open to Public
County: Bullitt
Region: Bluegrass Region
Size: 1539.59
Owner:
 Kentucky Division of Forestry
Manager:
Purchased with Assistance of:
Lat: 37.890244
Long: -85.695819