Crawford Park District 2401 SR 598 Crestline, Oh 44827 419-683-9000
Sears Woods State Nature Preserve 1486 Mt Zion Rd, Bucyrus, OH 44820 Map / Directions
Not just a gem for Crawford County, but for all of Ohio, Sears Woods is an awesome example of what a mature forest looks like. Situated 1.5 miles southwest of Bucyrus, Sears Woods encompasses 137 acres. Its 1 mile loop trail meanders through a mature upland forest, upon bluffs overlooking the Sandusky River, and winds its way through old field habitat. The trail is marked with orange flagging to keep hikers on the path during autumn leaf fall.
Sears Woods has an abundant display of wildflowers, especially in spring. They blanket the forest floor under a canopy of towering maples, oaks, cherries, and hickories. The trees themselves are giants, relics of days gone by when large trees would have been the norm. The forest provides many spectacular views during the fall season, as the colors mix and mingle, offering photographers excellent shots. Sounds of woodpeckers in the winter months can be heard as they battle squirrels for nuts; deer flee from view as their white tail disappears into the forest. Chorusing Wood Frogs call from the ephemeral pools in late winter. Flocks of migrating songsters – warblers, thrushes, vireos, tanagers – work their way through Sears Woods in the spring, looking for caterpillars to sustain their energy. Some bird species stay and can be heard through the spring and into the summer, just as the singing insects begin to fill the air with their songs.
Sears Woods is jointly owned with the Ohio Dept. of Natural Resources, Division of Natural Areas and Preserves. The Park District maintains a management agreement with them to ensure the use of Sears Woods as a public State Nature Preserve. It was purchased in 1986 from Paul Sears (1891-1990), the well known ecologist and conservationist from Crawford County.