Black Rock Barrens

Natural Areas: Black Rock Barrens

State Designated Nature Preserve [#190; 2003]

View through wintertime woods looking down toward Wabash River floodplain.

Preserve interior. Click to enlarge

Black Rock Barrens lies to the east of the parking area that it shares with the adjacent Weiler-Leopold Nature Reserve. A loop trail, marked with yellow-orange blazes, wastes no time entering the woods and then heads east past numerous shagbark hickory trees. A few hundred yards in, the trail turns sharply south to avoid a large ravine. In doing so, it begins descending a dry slope strewn in places with loose rock. Aspect and vegetation change with elevation; on the floodplain below, where organic matter accumulates, the soils are deeper and better at holding water. The trail wends its way back to the west, and then makes another right-hand turn at a narrow gravel wash. As you climb back up the hillside, the rutted wash will gradually reveal itself as an old road, and then intersect with the entrance trail close to its beginning.

Trail Map

trail map

Click to enlarge


Warren County. From the hamlet of Independence, go northeast 3.4 miles on Independence Road to a parking area on the right (south).

GPS: N 40 21.554 W 87 06.964



Finder Sketch

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Nearby Natural Areas (miles)

Weiler-Leopold Nature Reserve (0.0)
Granville Sand Barrens (10.5)
Mulvey Pond (13.4)
Horticultural Park (14.2)
Shawnee Bottoms (16.8)
Rock Creek Nature Preserve (17.3)