T1 - Jenny Wiley State Resort Park
Jenny Wiley State Resort Park, located deep in the heart of the Appalachians, is accented by scenic 1,100-acre Dewey Lake. Named for a brave pioneer woman who survived Indian capture in the area, Jenny Wiley resort is known as a polished mountain retreat.
Habitat and Trail Info: Acquaint yourself with the natural beauty of the Park on the hiking trails. The trails provide over ten miles of hiking for all ability levels.
The Jenny Wiley Trail Heritage Byway embraces a 154-mile loop drive in Eastern Kentucky. The route provides easy access to more than 60 miles of existing recreational facilities, such as hiking trails.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: Elk Viewing; Monthly Jan. March and Sept. Dec. May, Witness the migration of the songbirds! Speakers and experienced birders provide talks and field walks. Especially nesting warblers. Highlight of the event viewing American redstarts while walking the Cabin Road. Swallows, belted kingfisher, great blue and green heron, beaver, mink, squirrel, rabbit and deer along with wildflowers and many varieties of birds.
T2 Yatesville Lake State Park
Start out going S on COURT ST toward Main. Turn Left onto Main. Turn Left onto KY-40/US-23 BR/US-460 BR. Turn Left onto 2nd. 2nd becomes James S. Tremble Blvd. Turn Right onto KY-321/N MAYO TRL. Continue to follow KY-321 N. Turn rightT onto US-23. Turn right onto KY-2565. Dist: 29.7 miles
Yatesville Lake, an impoundment of the Big Sandy River, is the largest lake in far eastern Kentucky and offers the best bluegill fishing.
Habitat and Trail Info: The 2300-acre mountain reservoir spans over 20 miles in length and is dotted with three islands. The State Park and 17,300-acre wildlife management area border the lake. The wooded, hilly terrain is made up of hardwoods with some broad bottomlands. Several man-made wetlands with a viewing area are at the back of the lake 4 miles North of Blaine on KY 201.
Hiking Trails: There are two trails at the campground and two at the marina through mature forested hillsides with views of the lake. A trail circles the wetland viewing area on KY 201 and the Wolf Pen Trail is off of Lick Branch at the back end of the lake.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: Enjoy Yatesville Lake by boat and view one of the two known nesting pairs of Eagles in Eastern Kentucky. Migrant and nesting warblers in Spring and Summer include Cerulean, Kentucky, and Worm-eating Warblers.
Grasshopper Sparrows, Purple Martins, and Red-headed Woodpeckers are near the dam. Migrating waterfowl are on the lake and wetlands as well as Woodcock and Wild Turkey. Also Ruffed Grouse, songbirds, birds of prey, Dove, and Quail. Mammals such as coyote, bobcat, deer, otter, and other small mammals.
T3 Jesse Stuart Nature Preserve
Start NW on US-23/US-60/Winchester toward 13th. Turn Right onto 13TH/US-60 E. 13TH/US-60 E becomes 12th. Turn Left. Turn Left onto 12th. Turn Right onto US-23 N/Winchester. Follow US-23 N. Distance: 13.5 miles
Dedicated Dec. 7, 1979, Jesse Stuart State Nature Preserve is 714 acres located in Greenup County that was acquired through a gift-purchase arrangement with the internationally known author, Jesse Stuart. The area is used for passive recreation and environmental education. The preserve is also a Watchable Wildlife Site. Features - hills and hollows made famous in Stuart's writings.
Activities: hiking, bird-watching, literature study, etc.
Habitat and Trail Info: Ridgetops and hollows with maturing oak-hickory forest mixed with tulip poplar-maple groves in ravines. Some open pasture.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: View mammals and songbirds in spring and fall. Flying squirrels, deer, turkey, Eastern towhee, white-eyed vireo, red-tailed hawk, opossum, groundhog, striped skunk, raccoon, gray and fox squirrel. Spring is the time to see abundant wildflowers. Iris, toothwort, wild geranium, Jack-in-the-pulpit, and wild ginger. Summer brings Joe Pye weed, Mayapple, heal all, golden ragwort, and asters.
T4 Greenbo Lake State Resort Park
Start out going N on US-23 N toward Cemetery Rd. Turn Left onto KY-2. Distance: 7.4 miles
Holds the pristine beauty of the Kentucky hills that inspired poet Jesse Stuart, a lifelong resident of the area. You will appreciate his visions as you visit the beautiful fieldstone lodge or relax in front of the copper-hooded fireplace in the lodge lobby.
Habitat and trail info: Greenbo Lake is 225 acres in size. Oak-hickory and mixed pine-hardwood forests. Nature Trails: The hiking trails provide the perfect opportunity to enjoy the scenery of the beautiful Greenbo forest. Self-guided: 25 miles of easy to difficult hiking.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: deer, red fox, squirrel, eastern bluebird in open areas, downy woodpecker, wren, migrant and nesting warblers in spring and summer, especially KY warblers. Skunk, raccoon, mallard, Canada geese, red-tailed hawk, and barred owl.
T5 Carter Caves State Resort Park
Start out going SW on KY-2 toward KY-7. Turn Left onto KY-2. Turn Left onto KY-182. Distance: 24.1 miles
Is home to more than 20 caverns -- those explored and those not yet charted -- winding beneath its forested hills. Sign up for a guided cave tour or hiking trip, or grab your partner for a canoe trip down Tygart's Creek. Adventure awaits you!
Habitat and trail info: Numerous caves/caverns underlying forested hills of oak-hickory and mixed pine-hardwoods. 40-acre reservoir, small pond, and wetland. Nature Trails; Discover the aboveground beauty of Carter Caves on 26 miles of wooded nature trails. Trails range from easy to difficult hiking level ability. The Kiser Hollow Trail is a multi-use 10-mile trail for horseback riding, mountain biking and hiking. There is a parking area at the trailhead for trucks with horse trailers. Guests bring and ride mountain bikes. No ATVs allowed, and no overnight camping on the trail.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: raccoon, skunk, chipmunk, squirrel, white-tailed deer, red and gray fox, weasel, beaver, mink, muskrat, and otter. Wood duck, merganser, great blue and green heron, killdeer, red-tailed and broad-winged, red-shouldered hawk, turkey vulture, great horned, barred, and screech owl. Ruffed grouse, and woodcock. Pileated and red-headed woodpecker. Migrant and nesting warblers.
Wildflower Pilgrimage: Trillium, hepatica and spring beauties blanket the valley edges and rocky outcroppings at Carter Caves. Special hikes and programs are offered, but you can enjoy the beauty on your own. Spring wildflowers along the entrance road usually peak about the third week in April, if weather permits and creates an amazing array of color. Also a great time to enjoy migrating warblers. Trillium, hepatica and spring beauty abound at the valley edges and rocky outcroppings of Carter Caves. Special hikes and programs.
T6 - Tygarts State Forest
Tygarts State Forest is located W of and adjacent to Carter Caves State Resort Park off KY 182. There is a county road on the west edge of the area, and it is also accessible by a short hike from the state park.
Habitat and trail info: This 800 state forest adjoins Carter Caves State Park. The forest is made up of mostly hardwood trees, such as oaks and hickories. The forest has hiking and horseback riding trail. Camping and ATVs are not allowed in the forest.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: You will be certain to see deer, turkey and foxes using the area. There are six kinds of woodpeckers that call Tygarts Forest home and includes Pileated and Red-headed woodpeckers. In spring, look for migrating warblers. Summer, Ovenbirds can be heard singing in the hills as well as other nesting warblers and songbirds. At night, listen for Great Horned Owls and Whip-or-Wills.
T7 - Grayson Lake Wildlife Management Area
Grayson WMA is located 7 mi. S of Grayson, can be reached by KY 7, 1496 and by boat.
This area has a few primitive interior roads. It is mainly hilly and steep, with some gently sloping upland areas and fairly flat creek bottoms. The area is mostly forested with some abandoned fields and food plots. No ATVs are allowed. Fishing and boating are allowed on Grayson Lake. A campground with water and electrical hookup is available at Grayson Lake State Park. Grayson WMA is located 7 mi. S of Grayson, can be reached by KY 7, 1496 and by boat. Owned by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.
Habitat and trail info: Scenic vertical cliffs, and waterfalls 150 feet above the lake. Primary viewing area is below the dam from paved roads. Best viewing is along Grayson Lake Nature Trail. This self-guided Nationally Registered trail follows the Little Sandy River and includes viewing opportunities at an oxbow formed from the old river channel.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: Deer, squirrel, raccoon, grouse, turkey, migratory waterfowl (what Type?), and bald eagles can be found here.
Grayson Lake Nature Trail: Located on KY 7, below the dam at Grayson Lake, the 1 _ mile National Registered Nature Trail follows the Little Sandy River through ravine, mature woodland and open areas of various stages of succession. The trail passes through hemlock, sandstone cliffs and rock formations that create picturesque waterfall in wet seasons. In spring, the trail is beautifully adorned with many wildflowers, dogwood and redbuds trees, especially in June when the mountain laurel is blooming. Wildlife is abundant and can be enjoyed at the many resting areas along the trail.
From the Nature Trail, those wanting a longer walk; can connect with the 2-_ mile Primitive Loop Trail. This trail will take you up the hill, across the ridge and down to the arch bridge below the dam to the Environmental Study Area. Along the trail be sure to listen for the sounds of worm-eating warblers and the musical song of the scarlet tanager. Other species include yellow-billed cuckoo, summer tanager and indigo bunting. Be on the lookout for one of the six species of woodpeckers that live in the area, as well as turkey and grouse.
The Environmental Study Area is accessible for those with limited walking abilities and wheelchairs. You will find tall native grasses full of butterflies, sparrows and other grass loving birds. Check out the wetlands for turtles, frogs and others using the wetland. Food plots make viewing deer an easy task.
T8 - Grayson Lake State Park Habitat and trail info: Located on KY 7 South. Sheer sandstones canyons and gentle slopes contain the 1,512 acres of Grayson Lake, a serenely beautiful area. The spacious campground has modern facilities and hiking trails.
Wildlife viewing opportunities: Deer and turkey are common sites, as well as many other mammals. Bird highlights include blue-winged warblers, worm-eating warblers, prairie warblers and cerulean warblers.
Bruin Recreation Area: Bruin Recreation Area overlooks Grayson Lake and offers access for boaters. Ducks and geese can be seen on the lake as well as many other kinds of birds including American Bald Eagle.
Watch the grassy area for a groundhog and deer feeding on the sweet grasses. This area is managed by the US Army Corps of Engineers.
T9 Paintsville Lake State Park
Start out going Southwest on KY-7 toward KY-409. Turn LEFT onto KY-32/KY-7. Continue to follow KY-32. Turn RIGHT onto KY-469 (Portions unpaved). Turn LEFT onto KY-469. Turn LEFT onto KY-172. Distance: 45 miles
Beautiful Paintsville Lake gleams like a jewel in the crown of mountains of Eastern Kentucky. With its steep cliffs and wooded coves, this lake provides 1,140 acres of boating, skiing, and fishing pleasure.
Habitat and trail info: Forests of hemlock, oak-hickory and mixed pine-hardwoods. Paintsville Lake WMA contains 12,103 acres when the lake is at summer pool. 26 ponds on the WMA. 1.2 mile driving tour from the WMA entrance to the lake. 1.25-mile Kiwanis Trail, on National Registry of Trails. Guided tours by appointment.
Wildlife Viewing Opportunities: Deer, turkey, ruffed grouse, osprey, wood duck, common loon, Canada goose, coot, gulls, red-bellied woodpecker and white-breasted nuthatch, migrant and nesting warblers in spring and summer.