Hemlock Bluff Trail
The Hemlock Nature Preserve are 44 acres of woodland situated in southwest Jackson County, southern Indiana. Most of the preserve is located on the steep, impressive slope along the south bank of Guthrie Creek. The slope supports mixed strands of hemlock and hardwood trees. The hemlocks are remnants of a previous glacial period. They persist this far south only on cooler, north-facing slopes. The largest hemlock in the state, 33 inches in diameter at 45 feet above ground level, is found here. In addition to hemlocks, the slope forest includes American beech, sugar maple, red oak, basswood, and red elm.
Hemlock Nature Preserve also boasts lots of wildflowers and wildlife such as weasels, minks, and fox squirrels. Guthrie Creek contains water most of the year, but may be dry part of the summer. At one place, the creek cuts into the bluff, exposing a steep bank of Mississippian shale.
There is one trail in Hemlock Bluff Nature Preserve, and it is windy, hilly, and narrow, of all natural surfaces. The path is only for hiking and is marked by blue coloring on trees. It is very rustic. There is a parking lot off 200S. between Bedford and Brownstown. Brownstown is the county seat of Jackson County, with an impressive town hall. The preserve also borders Jackson/Lawrence County Nature Preserve and trails, just east of Leesville. There are trash receptacles at the entrance of the Hemlock Bluff Nature Preserve.
For a unique experience in hiking in Indiana, consider testing out the Hemlock Bluff Nature Preserve.