West Creek Conservancy Offers Discovery Walks and Trail Run

Local land trust West Creek Conservancy continues its 2018 series of free guided walks to explore areas seldom seen by the public. You are invited to come on out and enjoy! Most outings have been held on properties that the Conservancy owns outright or protected with the help of partner organizations. Walks in September highlight two of the group’s projects.

On September 15th we will walk along proposed routes of the West Creek Greenway just south of West Creek Reservation. The Greenway is a 25-mile network of trails conceived by West Creek Conservancy in 1998. It will directly link communities with three metropark reservations, Cuyahoga Valley National Park, and many other destinations. The Greenway will radiate east, north, and west from West Creek Reservation – itself an early result of WCC’s efforts – and connect to the Towpath Trail and Big Creek Reservation.  Several significant pieces of the West Creek Greenway already exist, but most of the route remains conceptual. The September 15th walk invites you to envision what is possible and get a “before” peak of the planned trail route and surrounding terrain.

On September 20th, another outing will take you to the Snake Hill area, an area protected by the Conservancy several years ago. It contains wetland, a large expanse of forest, and the scenic upper reaches of Big Creek. This area has not yet been developed as a public park and remains in a natural state.

More upcoming 2018 events include walks and presentations about the former Parmadale campus, a future addition to the West Creek Greenway acquired last year by the Conservancy, and walks along the Hemlock Creek trail segment of the Greenway in Independence.

Runners will be interested in a 5K trail run in West Creek Reservation on October 27th benefiting the work of West Creek Conservancy. Called “Creatures in the Forest,” it also includes a 1-mile fun walk and a free “Trot-for-Treats” for children under 12.  5K registration is required.

West Creek Conservancy has been connecting people to nature since its founding in 1997. To date it has conserved with its partners over 2,000 acres of habitat across 20 communities, creating and expanding several parks along the way. Its mission is to enrich the lives of people in Greater Cleveland by conserving natural habitats, restoring the ecological value and sustainability of urban lands, and expanding neighborhood opportunities to experience nature.  The Conservancy is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that relies on donor support. Please consider joining today.  Learn more at westcreek.org.


Sat., Sept 15th, 9 am – noon.  “Hiking the Future West Creek Greenway – Seven Hills to West Creek Reservation.”  Explore the connections proposed between Seven Hills and southern West Creek Reservation, including a little valley of waterfalls as we walk 4 to 5 miles. Meet at Normandy High School rear parking lot, near the track, Parma. Terrain hilly with a few off-trail climbs.

Thurs., Sept 20th, 5:30 pm – 7 pm. “Discover Snake Hill Conservation Area.” We’ll take a casual 1.5-mile walk through one of Parma’s largest protected areas featuring the scenic headwaters of Big Creek. Terrain is moderate.  Meet at Sandy Hook Park, 6600 Larch Dr., west on Sandy Hook Dr. from State Rd. in Parma.

For a complete list of events, more details, or to learn more about West Creek Conservancy, visit westcreek.org or call 216-749-3720.

Jeff Lennartz

Jeff Lennartz chairs the board of directors of West Creek Conservancy.  As a founding member of the Conservancy, Canalway Partners, and other local environmental groups, he has spent decades leading efforts to protect and showcase the natural and historic heritage of Greater Cleveland.  Raised in Parma, Jeff is an engineer by day and lives with his wife in Cleveland's Old Brooklyn neighborhood.

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Volume 10, Issue 9, Posted 3:39 PM, 09.02.2018