New Castle, IN, Oct 12, 2021– On October 9, a group of students from Ball State University joined Red-tail Land Conservancy to expand the trail at Blue River Bottoms Nature Preserve in Henry County. The volunteer project was made possible by a $250 grant from ExtremeTerrain, an off-road outfitter, as part of their Clean Trail Initiative Program.
Blue River Bottoms is a 19-acre nature preserve established by Red-tail in 2004. Its primary feature is access to the Big Blue River as it flows on the southwest side of New Castle.
Since its establishment, visitors to the preserve could only view a small section of the river using a narrow footpath. On Saturday, student volunteers spent hours cutting down invasive plant species, expanding the trail to three times its original length. Visitors can now walk along the edge of the river halfway across the preserve.
ExtremeTerrain’s Clean Trail Grant Program and trail improvement project helped cover costs of volunteer amenities like food and water throughout the day.
“Thanks to the generous support from ExtremeTerrian and hard work of the student volunteers, visitors can now truly experience the vibrancy of plants and wildlife in Blue River Bottoms Nature Preserve,” said Kelley V. Phillips, Red-tail’s Communications and Outreach Manager.
All of Red-tail’s public nature preserves are free to enter and open dawn to dusk. Information on directions, parking, and trail maps are at www.ForTheLand.org.