Nazareth, PA -- Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) Secretary Cindy Adams Dunn visited Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center in Northampton County today to celebrate its forest heritage and induct the Henry’s Woods area into the Old-Growth Forest Network.
“There aren’t any other places in the Lehigh Valley to experience an old growth forest with trees that have lived for hundreds of years,” Dunn said. “We are pleased that this designation calls attention to how special Henry’s Woods is, and to spotlight for the public the unique and exciting opportunities that are offered for outdoor recreation and experiencing nature in our state parks and forests.”
Henry’s Woods, which has never been logged, is the only remaining old-growth forest in the Lehigh Valley. Old-growth eastern hemlock, Pennsylvania’s state tree, and white oak tower more than 130 feet above the forest floor. The 122-acre forest surrounds Bushkill Creek and can best be enjoyed by walking the 1.9 mile trail that loops through the woods.
The Old-Growth Forest Network is a national organization working to preserve ancient forests for the enjoyment of present and future generations. In counties capable of supporting forest growth the network identifies at least one forest that will be protected from logging and open to the public.
“Pennsylvania is one of the nation’s leaders in terms of identifying ancient forests that are open to the public and off limits to logging,” said Founder and Director of the Old-Growth Forest Network Joan Maloof. “We depend on a volunteer in each county to help us identify candidate forests. In addition to creating a network of forests, we are also creating a network of people who care about forests.”
Henry’s Woods -- Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center is the 132nd addition to the network. Six sites total are being added in Pennsylvania this year.
The additional five sites are:
- McConnells Mill State Park, Lawrence County;
- White Clay Creek Preserve, Chester County;
- Jakey Hollow Natural Area in Weiser State Forest, Columbia County:
- World's End State Park, Sullivan County; and
- Fallbrook Natural Area at Salt Springs State Park, Susquehanna County.
Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center encompasses 1,168 acres of forests, fields, and creeks, which provide a wealth of recreational and educational opportunities. Visitors can enjoy exhibits at the visitor center during open hours.
Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center is a partner in the Lehigh Valley Greenways, which seeks to engage state and local governments and nonprofit conservation groups to promote land conservation and education.
Find more information about Jacobsburg Environmental Education Center on the DCNR website, and about the Old-Growth Forest Network at its site.
MEDIA CONTACT: Christina Novak, 717-579-5177
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