By Molly Congdon
GLENVILLE — Go ahead; brave the great outdoors!
Here’s Part 10 in this summer’s exploration of public natural places in the Clifton Park/Halfmoon area.
The Indian Kill Nature Preserve might not be located right in Clifton Park or Halfmoon, but it’s very close by and definitely worth the short drive.
Location: It is situated in the town of Glenville on Hetcheltown Road.
Description: The 100-acre preserve follows the banks and bluffs of the Indian Kill. It includes a number of diverse habitats, including native hardwood forest lands, conifer plantations and wetlands.
Level of difficulty: You determine the intensity of your visit. Depending on the time of year, visitors can be found hiking, studying nature, fishing, cross-country skiing and snowshoeing.
Wildlife to see: You’ll find tons of wildflowers and a variety of fern species. Hepatica, trout lilies, trillium, cohosh, toothwort, and jack-in-the-pulpits bloom along the stream banks, providing a pop of color.
A total of 11 species of ferns can be found growing along the trails, which emphasize the diverse habitats of the area consisting of moist stream banks, wetlands, cool north-facing bluffs and the dry sandy uplands.
There is both flora and fauna to keep your eyes peeled for. There are plenty of animal tracks to follow (perhaps you’ll even stumble across what made them) and frogs to catch.
Sights to see: The stream and waterfalls are relaxing and refreshing, especially on hot days. Wade into the water and skip some rocks across the surface while shaded by the leafy branches of trees.
Must bring: Water, snacks, polarized sunglasses and an extra pair of socks. (You’ll thank me when your first pair is soaked.)