Bibb County Glades Preserve

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Kathy-Freeland-Glades.jpgMore than 60 rare plants have been found in and around the Bibb County Glades Preserve since its discovery in 1992. The Bibb County Glades Preserve, which covers 480 acres, is located along the Little Cahaba River and runs through the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge. The glades are home to eight plants that had never before been seen or named by scientists. This type of discovery might be expected in the Amazon Rain Forest, but it was unheard of in North America in modern times.
More than half of all rare plants in Bibb County are found in the open treeless Ketona glades. Different plants bloom in the glades throughout the spring and summer, so you'll see something new each time you visit. You can hike through the glades to soak it all in, but many species, such as the endangered Mohr's Barbara's buttons, can be seen while driving along country roads in the preserve. The Nature Conservancy purchased some of the lands and created the Bibb County Glades Preserve in 1996. For more information, visit www.nature.org/wherewework/northamerica/states/alabama/preserves/art902.html or www.fws.gov/cahabariver

Directions
From Birmingham: Take I-65 south to the Calera/U.S. Highway 31 exit and travel south about 3 miles into Calera. In downtown Calera, turn right onto Alabama Highway 25 south toward Centreville. Go 12 to 13 miles through Montevallo and Wilton. Turn right (north) onto Bibb County Road 65 and travel about 3 miles. Cross the Little Cahaba River at Bulldog Bend and continue for 0.8 miles beyond the bridge. Turn left (south) onto an unnamed dirt road and go about 0.2 miles to where the road dead-ends at the preserve parking area. Follow the natural trail to the Little Cahaba River.

From Montgomery: Take I-65 north to the Calera/University of Montevallo exit. Turn left to cross over the interstate and travel west about 1 mile into Calera. In downtown Calera, turn left onto US Highway 31 and then almost immediately turn right onto Alabama Highway 25 south toward Centreville. Follow the directions above the rest of the way.

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The Little Cahaba River

Piper Interpretive Trail

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