Huntsville, Alabamas Hays Nature Preserve

August 22, 2022 By Admin

Huntsville, Alabamas Hays Nature Preserve


Nova Sisk

Hays Nature Preserve is a protected green space along the scenic Flint River near Huntsville, Alabama. The preserve gives visitors to northern Alabama many opportunities to enjoy the outdoors, and it allows access to recreational activities along the river. Hays Nature Preserve and nearby Goldsmith Schiffman Wildlife Sanctuary, which will open soon, offer some of the most natural and least developed parkland in the region.


Visitors will find more than 10 miles of trails at Hays Nature Preserve. Some trails are paved and some are natural woodland paths suitable for mountain biking. The Flint River Greenway and the Big Cove Creek Greenway are easy walking trails. Other trails lead though wooded areas, bottomland near the river, swamps, and sloughs. There are boardwalks in some areas. Horses are allowed on trails in the northern part of the preserve. An iron footbridge leads across the Flint River. Hikers will also see the remaining stone bridge abutments from a bridge that was burned during the Civil War. Hays Nature Preserve is home to a variety of wildlife. Hikers may see deer, raccoons, rabbits, and an occasional snake. Beavers have formed dams on some of the smaller streams to create ponds, where visitors may see fish, turtles, and other water creatures. The preserve has been designated as a stop on the North Alabama Birding Trail. Native birds as well as migratory birds have been seen in the area, including belted kingfishers, Great Blue herons, green herons, pileated woodpeckers, song sparrows, Eastern bluebirds, and Wilsons snipes. The large trees in the preserve provide habitat for some of the wildlife. Visitors will see large specimen trees such as black walnuts, shellbark hickories, American elms, water oaks, willow oaks, and huge water tupelos. Other facilities at the preserve include a new playground, picnic areas, and restrooms. Dogs are allowed but must be leashed. Hunting is not allowed. The Flint River provides excellent fishing. Canoeing and kayaking are also popular in the river, which has gentle current in this area. Canoes or kayaks could be carried down the steps at Cherokee Landing to launch in the river. Guided hikes, themed childrens Play Days, and other activities are scheduled throughout the year. Future plans at the nature preserve include a Watershed Education Center. Hays Nature Preserve is located off Hwy. 431, approximately 11 miles southeast of I-565. It is adjacent to Hampton Cove Golf Course, a course on Alabamas Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail. Admission to the preserve is free.

Nova Sisk is the General Manager for Hampton Inn & Suites

Scottsboro Hotel

. The Hampton Inn & Suites Scottsboro hotel in Alabama is located in the mountain/lakes region of northern Alabama surrounded by majestic mountains and rich valleys, located minutes from Lake Guntersville.

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Huntsville, Alabamas Hays Nature Preserve