Boone County Cliffs & Middle Creek Park & Road. Boone County, Kentucky

Middle Creek Park (a 230 acre Boone County Park) and the Boone County Cliffs Preserve (a Nature Conservancy property) are both nestled in the wooded hills of western Boone County, Kentucky. The picturesque Middle Creek Road and Middle Creek run between these two locations and comprise one of the most beautiful riparian corridors in our region. Join our trip leader, Ann Oliver, as she explores this fascinating area on a pleasant morning walk in early summer. Ann is an experienced and highly skilled birder and long-time ASO advocate. Ann has led many ASO and other field trips in the past, including several to this area, so she knows the area very well.

Spring migration will be over by this date, but at least 13 species of warblers and many other birds breed along the creek and in the forested hillsides of this beautiful area. The birding in this general area can be phenomenal.
The whole region is forested and contains some old-growth forest habitat reliable for breeding Worm-eating Warblers which is generally rare in most of our region. Other breeding forest birds are also expected, including Broad-winged Hawk, Cerulean, Hooded and Kentucky Warblers, Ovenbird, Louisiana Waterthrush and both tanagers. Middle Creek, which flows through the area, is loaded with Northern Parulas, Yellow-throated Warblers and numerous other breeding birds. Prairie Warblers & Yellow-breasted Chats are common in adjacent successional areas.

Ann plans to begin the trip at Middle Creek Park and spend some time walking and birding along the trails in this wonderful park. She then plans to make several driving stops along picturesque Middle Creek Road. Middle Creek Road is an excellent birding spot, but it is narrow and has limited space to pull off. Nonetheless we should be able to walk a good bit of this lovely secluded and little used road. We will end the trip a little before noon at the Boone County Cliffs Preserve, which is again open to the public. The birding is excellent along the lower parts of the Boone County Cliffs and we will bird along them. One section of the trail is very steep however, but Ann does not plan to hike to the top of the cliffs. If you have the time, and are able, you can always continue on your own and explore after the trip ends.

This trip will consist of mostly walking, but because we do not plan to hike the steep cliff trails, the walking on this trip would be classed as moderate, not strenuous. Note also that there are no restrooms in any of these places. If nature calls you’ll have to drive back to civilization or find a quiet spot. Wear comfortable shoes and bring water to make your trip more enjoyable. Contact Ann if you have any questions.

Directions to Middle Creek Park:
From I-75: from I-75 take Kentucky 18, exit # 18, at Florence and go west. When you reach Burlington, KY, continue for 6.5 miles to the Middle Creek Park entrance, which will be on your left (south side of KY 18). The entrance is just a short distance past Middle Creek Rd.
Directions from the west: Take I-275 south and cross the Ohio River. After crossing the river take the first exit, which is KY 8, exit # 11. Turn right (west) onto KY 8, which immediately becomes KY 20 after a short distance. Continue west and then south on KY 20 for about 12 miles. At the intersection with KY 18, turn left or east onto KY 18 and go about 1 mile. The entrance to Middle Creek Park will be on your right (south side of KY 18). Middle Creek Rd. is just a short distance ahead.

For directions, a map and information about Middle Creek Park (a Boone County KY Park) go to the following webpage:
http://www.boonecountyky.org/departments/parks/middle_creek_park.aspx

For further info on the Nature Conservancy’s Boone County Cliffs go to the following webpage:
https://www.boonecountyky.org/departments/parks/boone_cliffs.aspx

Leave a Comment