John M. Olin Nature Preserve
Location and Access:
From the Rte. 3 and Rte. 67 junction in Alton, take Rte. 3 approx. 1 mile northwest to Levis Lane. Continue along Levis Lane approx. 0.5 mile to second road on left. Follow this road 0.25 mile to the entrance of the preserve.
Steep limestone bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River as well as sink holes, ravines, bedrock outcrops, small streams, a waterfall, upland forest and loess hill prairie characterize this area. Dry upland forest occurs on the ridges and bluff tops and grades from dry to mesic on the slopes and along the streams. The forest is mostly young to mature second growth with the largest trees found on the lower slopes and bottoms of the ravines. Scattered old second growth trees occur in some of the ravines. The forest has a high diversity of tree species with the dry and dry-mesic woods dominated by post, black, white and chinquapin oaks. Mesic woods contain, white, red and chinquapin oak and sugar maple, hickory, ash and hackberry. The sheltered ravine forests provide potential winter roost sites for bald eagles. A small, diverse hill prairie occurs on a southwest facing loess bluff. Little bluestem and sideoats grama are the most common prairie grasses with purple coneflower, bluets and purple prairie clover among the most common forbs.
Ownership: The Nature Institute, Village of Godfrey, and Great Rivers Land Trust
Dedicated: December 1990
Size: 342.3 acres with buffer
Topo Map: Alton 7.5
For Further Information Contact: Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Natural Heritage Biologist, 4521 Alton Commerce Parkway, Alton, IL 62002 (618/462-1181)