Old Tram Road Addition to Rock Run
Acres: 23 Project Value: $34,500
Expanding the Preserve to 803 Acres
Rock Run is truly a wilderness preserve. Surrounded by 64,000 acres of Shawnee State Forest, it is part of one of the largest near-contiguous blocks of forest in the state, the equivalent of 100 square miles. Rock Run and Shawnee State Forest are an epicenter for plant diversity, a stronghold for neo-tropical breeding birds, and one of the last refuges for endangered timber rattlesnakes.
In the dawn of the year 2020, Arc staff and board members assessed that the protection of the immediate watershed of Rock Run was essentially complete. Since 2004, the Arc has purchased nine properties totaling 780 acres in the watershed. Between our organization’s holdings and those of Shawnee State Forest, 98% of Rock Run’s watershed was at that time in conservation holders’ hands. How many watersheds in our country or state can boast such a claim? Few indeed! It was a satisfying achievement for the Arc to offer this protection to such an incredibly pristine stream.
Only two properties in the watershed still remained in private hands and we figured it could be decades before either one of them came up for sale. But wouldn’t you know? One of them came up for sale early in 2020! We jumped at the chance to put the 23 acre tract on Tram Road into contract.
The waters of Rock Run are sparkling and pristine – being one of the most protected creeks in Ohio. Photo by Brian Prose.