Greene County News
YELLOW SPRINGS — Glen Helen is celebrating a historic a partnership with the Buckeye Trail Association, encouraging hikers to step off of the paved bike path and continue onto the earthen trails of the nature preserve.
The two organizations signed an agreement in late February 2016, agreeing to utilize established trails within the Glen as a scenic continuation of The Buckeye Trail. The organizations are working to select a route through the nature preserve that will highlight the Glen’s geological features, waterfalls and picturesque cliffs.
Ohio’s State Trail currently encompases more than 1,400 miles of scenic landscape trails, reaching into every corner of the state. The first length of included trail will be announced during Glen Helen’s Earth Day Celebration, Green(E) Fest, 2 p.m. Saturday, April 24, as Glen Welcomes the Buckeye Trail to the nature preserve with a ribbon cutting event.
“We are thrilled to welcome Buckeye Trail hikers into Glen Helen,” Glen Helen Executive Director Nick Boutis said. “Centuries ago, Glen Helen was an important destination along the stagecoach routes across Ohio. Now, once again long-distance travelers will have the chance to explore Glen Helen as they make their way across the state.”
Both Glen Helen and the Buckeye Trail have spent decades encouraging visitors to take time to enjoy the landscape and to learn about and conserve native lands. The inclusion of the Buckeye Trail will uphold and advance this experience for hikers, offering an on-the-trail experience as well as opening doors for volunteerism and education for the membership of both organizations.
Andrew Bashaw, Executive Director of the Buckeye Trail Association states, “At more than 1,400 miles, Ohio’s Buckeye Trail is not the fastest route around the state — but we hope it’s the most interesting way for people to connect to Ohio’s unique natural history and cultural heritage,” Executive Director Andrew Bashaw of the Buckeye Trail Association said. “We are excited to add Glen Helen Nature Preserve to the list of important destinations along the BT that help to tell Ohio’s story. Now, the Glen will be connected to the Headlands Dunes on Lake Erie, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Hocking Hills State Park, the banks of the Ohio River in Cincinnati, the Miami & Erie Canal Towpath in one long, continuous hiking experience.”
Since the early 1920’s, Glen Helen has served as a steward to more than 1000 acres of flora and fauna, located in the heart of the Village of Yellow Springs. Supported by membership and visitor participation, the Glen champions native plant restoration and land conservation, ecological education and raptor rehabilitation. Unifying two like-minded organizations will strengthen awareness throughout the State while offering Buckeye Trail hikers an opportunity to discover the many historical, geological and environmental gems within the Glen.