Cradle of Forestry Offers Walks to Beaver Wetland

The Cradle of Forestry invites the public to a program, “Bogs, Bugs and Beavers,” on Saturday, May 28, 2016.

The program begins inside the Cradle’s interpretive center at 10:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. with an introduction about beavers’ adaptations to living in a watery world. Then naturalists will lead walks to boardwalks along the Pink Beds Trail, interpreting the beavers’ wetland creating activities, the changing habitats they create, and the woods and water along the way.

Each program lasts about 1.5 hours with a walking distance of about 2 miles. Participants can use nets provided to dip for aquatic insects and salamanders from the boardwalk. Binoculars are welcome to observe birds, butterflies and dragonflies that thrive in the scenic Pink Beds valley.

The Pink Beds is part of the 6,500 acre Cradle of Forestry in America area of the Pisgah National Forest. Beavers have been active in the valley for over 20 years, creating early succession habitats and changing flow patterns of the South Mills River. The boardwalks, constructed largely by Forest Service volunteers, allow recreationists elevated access while protecting this fascinating wet area.

Admission to the Cradle of Forestry is $5 for adults and free for youth under 16 years of age. America the Beautiful, Every Kid in a Park and federal Golden passes are honored. Admission includes the new film First in Forestry: Carl Alwin Schenck and the Biltmore Forest School, hands-on exhibits, a scavenger hunt, a firefighting helicopter simulator, historic cabins and antique equipment on two paved trails. It also includes the Adventure Zone, an activity designed to reach children with autism and engage young families. Lunch is available for purchase from Hobnob at the Cradle.

The Cradle of Forestry is located on Hwy. 276 in the Pisgah National Forest along the Forest Heritage National Scenic Byway, six miles north of Looking Glass Falls and four miles south of the Blue Ridge Parkway at milepost 412. For more information call (828) 877-3130 or visit www.cradleofforestry.com.

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