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Land Conservation Success in 2023

February 2, 2024
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In 2023, Land Trust of North Alabama surpassed an impressive milestone of preserving 10,000 acres across our region. This exciting achievement comes at a time when our community is growing faster than ever before and all land preservation achievements, big and small, are worthy of celebration. Each and every individual and business who contributes time and dollars to make our community-led conservation possible is critical. Thank you for your support.

Here’s a look back at last year’s land conservation successes, totaling 247 newly protected acres.

Drake Mountain – 44 acres

In April 2023, the Land Trust purchased an undisturbed piece of mountainside in Southeast Huntsville. It is located in a quickly growing area of the city and features springs, sinks, and ideal habitat for a wide variety of flora and fauna. Conservation of this property protects the mountainside viewshed visible from Dug Hill Road and Hwy 431. While access to this land is currently limited, future additions would make public access possible.

Beaverdam Swamp (Limestone County) – 15 acres

The City of Huntsville donated property to the Land Trust that is adjacent to the 702 acres they previously donated in 2020. Conservation of this wetland property ensures protection of the Spring Pygmy Sunfish and other sensitive species that rely on this vulnerable habitat.

Hickory Cove – 145 Acres

A land donation from Concord Land Development, Inc. of 145 acres in central Huntsville pushed us over the 10,000-acre mark and established our tenth public nature preserve. In June 2023, we officially opened Hickory Cove Nature Preserve nestled within the Trailhead community near the intersection of Highway 72 and Moores Mill Road. The property includes a 1.75-mile established trail known as Legacy Loop and neighbors the City of Huntsville’s Trailhead Greenway. This mountainside features a historic spring house, rocky bluffs, wet-weather falls, and a beautiful, diverse forest.

A portion of this property also provides the ideal location for the Land Trust’s future Nature Discovery Center, a welcoming and inclusive gateway to outdoor recreation and natural discovery for North Alabama. This has long been part of the Land Trust’s vision and will allow the organization to reach a broader audience with the goal of establishing a community understanding of the value of nature and its protection. Learn more about the Nature Discovery Center at

Monte Sano – 5.6 acres

In July, the Land Trust received a donation from See Forever Development Partners of 5.61 acres adjacent to Bankhead Parkway on west Monte Sano that maintains popular trail connections. This piece of undeveloped forest, located just above the Land Trust’s Bankhead Trailhead parking lot, filled a gap in Monte Sano Nature Preserve and includes a segment of Tollgate and Dummy Line Trails, which have been used for many years by hikers and bikers visiting the preserve. However, an undisturbed trail connection was not guaranteed until now. This acquisition also secures a portion of the proposed route for Tollgate Greenway, a paved, multi-use trail on Monte Sano that would provide pedestrians and bikers a safe, scenic route to travel on the western slope of the mountain while also offering access to nature for people with limited mobility who cannot utilize our natural trails. See renderings and donate to make this project possible at

Franklin County – 13.3 acres

This property is our first in Franklin County, meaning we now preserve land in seven of the ten counties in our service area. This land is a typical oak/hickory upland hardwood forest with a large ephemeral creek and seeping spring. With development threatening the property, it is a haven for wildlife and will now be protected forever.

Wade Mountain – 24 acres

A key piece of property on Wade Mountain was protected thanks to a donation from the Fleming family. Located on the east side of our Fleming Trailhead, this addition expands Wade Mountain Nature Preserve and enhances trail connectivity. The property also contains a small wetland area along the east fork of Pinhook Creek. Find more information about Wade Mountain Nature Preserve at

We can’t stop now!

How can you ensure natural land is protected as North Alabama communities grow? By becoming a Land Trust member, you can be an essential partner in making land conservation possible. But there are many ways you or your business can support this effort. Get started at