Ohio: Buck Creek State Park|
Posted on Thursday, January 19 @ 10:29:57 MST by iljiana
1901 Buck Creek Lane
Springfield, OH 45502
Buck Creek State Park lies in a fertile agricultural area, rich in
Ohio's history. The park's recreational facilities center around the
2,120-acre lake, offering endless water-related opportunities. Visitors
enjoy the many wetlands, broad meadows and wildlife at this diverse
More than 9.5 miles of hiking trails offer
opportunities for nature study, bird watching and other wildlife
observation. A scenic 10-mile bridle trail is also open to
snowmobiling, weather permitting.
Buck Creek State Park is leased from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Louisville District at C.J. Brown Dam
and Reservoir provides plenty of information to make your visit more
Nature of the Area
features of Buck Creek State Park can be attributed to the effects of
glaciers which receded from Ohio over 12,000 years ago. Low hills
called moraines can be seen in the area where glaciers halted for
extended periods of time and left deposits of gravel and sand. Old
river valleys were filled by these deposits where numerous springs now
well up through the sand and gravel. The nearby city of Springfield is
named for the many springs seeping up from the broad meadows. The
springs account for the many bogs and fens in Clark and Champaign
counties of which Cedar Bog is probably the best known.
These wet areas harbor an assortment of rare and unusual plants
including round-leaved sundew and horned bladderwort. The spotted
turtle, a state endangered animal, is found in the area. The
northernmost region of the park is an excellent area to observe
waterfowl. The shallow waters provide a stopover for thousands of
migrating ducks. Relatively rare songbirds of open meadows are also
present including dickcissels, bobolinks and Henslow sparrows.
History of the Area
Buck Creek was home to Indians and pioneers. The land at the time of
early settlement was mostly forested by large trees with minimal
undergrowth. Occasionally, the forests were interrupted by prairie
In 1780, George Rogers Clark, a Revolutionary war hero, led a band of
nearly 1,000 Kentuckians in a raid against Ohio Indians. The Shawnee
Indians abandoned their camp which they called Old Chillicothe (near
Xenia) and fled to Piqua, the Shawnee capital, located west of the
present site of Springfield. Clark pursued the fleeing Indians, and the
Shawnee were defeated at the Battle of Piqua. Most of the Indians,
however, had dispersed into the woodlands. One Indian hiding in the
woods was the young Tecumseh, who vowed to avenge the attack. Following
the battle, Clark's men retreated to their homes in Kentucky and the
Indians moved north. A new Piqua was erected on the banks of the Miami
River. This battle put a temporary end to Indian warfare.
With the decline of Indian threat, settlers moved into the area. In
1799, legendary frontiersman Simon Kenton settled in the region with
six other Kentucky families. The group lived near the confluence of
Buck Creek and Mad River. After two years, the settlers moved to
different areas. Kenton established a home along Buck Creek about four
miles north of present Springfield. Settlement brought change to the
area as trees were cut to construct buildings. Acres were cleared and
farm crops were planted. The settlers found the land extremely fertile.
The community of Springfield was founded in 1801 and has served since
then as the county seat of Clark County. In 1838, the National Road
(U.S. 40) reached Springfield and this opened new markets for
manufacturing and agriculture. Over the years, Springfield's character
changed from rural to industrial. By 1880, the community led the nation
in the manufacturing of agricultural implements.
In September 1966, work was started by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
to impound Buck Creek as a flood control project. In 1974, the Clarence
J. Brown Dam and Reservoir were dedicated and an agreement gave the
Ohio Department of Natural Resources the operation of much of the area.
Buck Creek State Park was officially opened in June 1975.
Nearby Kiser Lake, John Bryan and Madison Lake offer camping and other recreational opportunities. Cedar Bog State Nature Preserve,
a unique area of unusual flora and fauna, is operated by the Ohio
Historical Society. Located between Urbana and Springfield, the area is
open April-September for tours on Saturday and Sunday
Several other state nature preserves int he area are accessible by written permit only. Contact the ODNR Division of Natural Areas and Preserves to visit Liberty Fen, Prairie Road Fen, Siegenthaler Esker or Kiser Lake Wetlands.
The Crabill House,
operated by the Clark County Historical Society, is the restored home
of one of the area's early settlers, David Crabill. The brick home is
listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Tours are available.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
manages a visitor center and recreational site near the dam. The center
provides displays, programs and dam operation tours. Hiking, picnicking
and fishing are available.
From Cleveland, Ohio:
I-71 South to I-270 South, I-270 South to I-70 West, I-70 West to Exit
#62 to Route 40 West, 3 miles to first traffic light, right on North
Bird Road to Buck Creek Lane. 178 miles
From Columbus, Ohio:
I-70 West to Exit #62 to Route 40 West, 3 miles to first traffic light,
right on North Bird Road to Buck Creek Lane. 48 miles.
From Cincinnati, Ohio:
75 North to 675 North to I-70 East, follow to Exit #62 to Route 40
West, 3 miles to first traffic light, right on North Bird Road to Buck
Creek Lane. 77 miles.
From Toledo, Ohio:
I-75 South to I-70 East, Exit #62, go West on Route 40, 3 miles to
first traffic light, right on North Bird Road to Buck Creek Lane. 120
From Springfield, Ohio:
Follow Route 40 East to North Bird Road, turn North on North Bird Road
to Buck Creek Lane. 5 miles from downtown Springfield.
For maps and more information: