Leavenworth Barrens

Natural Areas: Leavenworth Barrens

State Designated Nature Preserve [#67; 1982]

Leavenworth Barrens

Leavenworth Barrens. Click to enlarge

Barrens are somewhat open areas that have a prairie aspect to them; plants include prairie dock, coneflower, bergamot, and others. Soils are usually dry, and the vegetation adapted to drought conditions. The Leavenworth Barrens occur in isolated and widely separated spots throughout this 700+ acre preserve; most are relatively small and will require hiking and exploration to reach. There is a small barrens area at the intersection of Dry Run Road and Tower Road (Tower Road was not marked during my last visit; it heads off to the left from Dry Run Road about a mile beyond the latter’s intersection with IN 62).

Two larger barrens are accessible within the preserve via a somewhat obscure lane that heads west from Tower Road. To get there, go about 0.4 miles on Tower Road beyond its intersection with Dry Run Road. Look for a lane on the left and park nearby. Follow the lane (on foot) and you’ll get there eventually. There are other barrens in the area, but you’ll have to search them out. One complicating factor is that this preserve is not marked and straying onto private land is a concern.

Trail Map

trail map

Click to enlarge


Crawford County. From downtown Leavenworth, east about 0.2 miles to Dry Run Road, then north 1.0 mile to an intersection with (unmarked?) Tower Road. Continue 0.4 mile and park along lightly used Tower Road across from a lane that heads off to the left.

GPS: N 38 12.981 W 86 20.152



Finder Sketch

Click to enlarge

Nearby Natural Areas (miles)

O'Bannon Woods State Park (11.1)
Post Oak-Cedar Nature Preserve (12.4)
Buzzard Roost (17.9)
Hemlock Cliffs (18.5)