Falls Ridge Preserve – Mill Creek Knob

Nature Preserve in SW Virginia

Just minutes outside Christiansburg, VA!

A last minute trip turned into a great little evening stroll. My roommate Jocelyn, and I went around Four O’Clock in the evening yesterday, giving us less than two hours of sunlight. Within those two hours, we drove out the small country road, hiked around the loop, took some great pictures, flew the drone, and peaked in a few of the caves that you can see as you walk around the preserve. Go make the most of your day, even if you do not have an abundance of daylight or it is rainy, just enjoy your time on Earth!

Below you will find a video of the drone footage I shot while I was out in the nature preserve. I will try to include drone footage whenever I can, I think it adds a bit of wonder and a different perspective than photos/videos from the ground level.

Shot during visit: (Jan. 5th, 2019)

Falls Nature Preserve (Quick Facts)

  • Two hiking trails at Falls Ridge Preserve – the Red Trail (Chamberlain Trail) and Silver Trail (Bradley Trail).
  • Salem Fault runs through the preserve, dividing it into two different rock types-Precambrian limestone and shale/sandstone. The corresponding difference in soil types generates a diversity of vegetation, particularly wildflowers and smaller flora.
  • Over thousands of years, the build-up of calcium carbonate steepened the stream’s gradient and slowly created both the waterfall and one of the largest-known exposed travertine deposits.
  • Area encompasses 655 acres
  • Open to the public: Dusk to Dawn

History

‘WHY THE CONSERVANCY SELECTED THIS SITE

In 1968, Mr. William P. Bradley, a photographer and publicist, bought the Falls Ridge Preserve area from a local family. Mr. Bradley used the property as a retirement home, eventually deeded Falls Ridge to the Conservancy in 1974.

A large Indian settlement was located upstream of Falls Ridge Preserve on the North Fork of the Roanoke River, but the only direct evidence of Indian activity has been the discovery of a few white flint arrowheads. In 1823, the Governor of Virginia granted to the Birchfield family 700 acres of land, encompassing part of the present day preserve.

A local family, the Dudleys, later acquired the land and used it not only for farming but also to operate several enterprises: a wool carding mill, general store, post office, lumber milk gram mill and a livery. In 1939, a kiln to produce burnt lime was installed at the falls by Harry Dudley.

Calcium carbonate cliffs (travertine) deposited by the stream were blasted loose, crushed and carted by mule to the top of the kiln. Traces of this operation can be seen near the falls.’ – Source: The Nature Conservancy

Falls Ridge Preserve Website

Trail Map

I will make sure to continue providing as much information as I can about a certain area and the people that have explored it. Hope you find your way to Falls Ridge Preserve someday!

Anything else you would like to see in the posts, feel free to comment below. Hope you Enjoyed!

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