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Hints of History

Crow’s Nest Preserve | Sat, April 07, 2018, 9:00am - 11:30am

Look back into the natural and cultural history of Crow’s Nest revealed by clues still visible today. Inspired by Tom Wessel’s book Reading the Forested Landscape, Preserve Manager Dan Barringer guides a leisurely hike to highlight historical signs of charcoal production, animal pastures, and the legacy of beaver along French Creek.

We’ll read the preserve landscape with the perspective of solving a mystery about what occurred on the site. Join us to learn and understand how history has a profound influence on current land management.

Optional afternoon field trip: Bring a bagged lunch to enjoy, then head over to neighboring French Creek State Park where we’ll examine the site of the 700-acre Hopewell Fire, which burned in 2012 and again in 2016. We’ll view the fires’ impact on the landscape, and see how the forest is regenerating.


Crow’s Nest Preserve
201 Piersol Road
Elverson , PA 19520


April 7, 2018
9:00am - 11:30am

Crow’s Nest is the gateway to the Hopewell Big Woods, a 73,000-acre expanse of forest that reaches north into Berks County. Just next door, you’ll find French Creek State Park and Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, making Crow’s Nest part of one of the largest areas of protected land in the region.

The pristine French Creek runs through Crow’s Nest, flowing from French Creek State Park’s Hopewell Lake on its way to the Schuylkill River. The preserve’s streamside forest helps protect the creek’s water quality.

Wildlife abounds at Crow’s Nest! You may spot Wood Ducks or see signs of beaver construction along French Creek; hear the songs of Wood Thrushes, Vireos, and warblers in the dense forests; or track the footprints of fox, raccoon, and deer. The preserve is part of the Hay Creek/French Creek Forest Block “Important Bird Area” (a National Audubon Society designation).

Crow’s Nest is a haven for other wild creatures: children! For decades, the preserve has hosted both after-school programs and a summer day camp to help combat the nature disconnect today’s kids face. The preserve includes a NaturePlayGround to encourage creative, unstructured play.

Dress for the season and wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes.
Pack a lunch if staying for the optional afternoon field trip.

Please leave your four-legged friends at home.


Registration required to reserve your spot. Please complete and submit the secure, on-line registration form below, or call 610-353-5587 ext. 221. $5 Natural Lands member, $7 non-member.

Not already a member? Purchase membership and event tickets below!

Events may be cancelled due to inclement weather or low registration. In that case, we will make every effort to update our website and contact registrants. Note that we cannot offer refunds of paid registrations or ticket purchases, but rest assured that your donation will help us in our work to save open space, care for nature, and connect people to the outdoors.

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Attendance at Natural Lands programs and events constitutes consent to be photographed for use in print and electronic media. Images will not be identified using full names without written approval from the individual. Please notify Natural Lands staff if you would prefer that your photo not be used.