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The Laura Hare Nature Preserve at Downey Hill

Nearly one square mile in size, this rugged preserve helps form a huge block of contiguous forest habitat, protected forever for the benefit of songbirds, raptors, and box turtles. A trail built by the Hoosier Hikers Council takes visitors on a beautiful journey from the ridgeline to the valley and back. Walk the easy portion along an old road, or do the loop for a more rugged hike. The final portion of the loop trail was completed by the Hoosier Hikers in the fall of 2017.

  • From the intersection of SR 46 and SR 135/Van Buren St in Nashville, drive east on SR 46 toward Gnaw Bone for 5.5 miles until you reach Valley Branch Rd.
  • Turn right on Valley Branch and drive 1.5 miles.
  • Turn left into a small gravel parking lot.
  • County: Brown
  • Features: Classic steep Brown County hills, brilliant fall colors, seasonal ponds, cerulean warblers
  • Acquired with gifts from: Members of the Downey Hill Corporation, The Laura Hare Charitable Trust, and Sycamore members
  • Acres: 593
  • Year acquired: 2012
  • Trail: The entire loop trail and gravel road are open now, totaling 6 miles.