Wayne Cave Preserve Expansion
Help us make “The Connection” with our new Wayne Cave Preserve Expansion!
The Connection is our exciting new property acquisition project! We have been waiting for years for the right opportunity to connect our Wayne Cave Preserve with the National Speleological Society’s Richard Blenz Nature Preserve. Now is the time and we know you are as excited as our Executive Board to see this vision come true.
The Indiana Karst Conservancy has managed access to Wayne Cave since 1986. In 2003 we acquired the entrance to Wayne Cave and the original 20 acres above the cave. Our overall objective is to preserve the karst and watershed of this important part of the Garrison Chapel karst area. To that end, an additional 12 acres was added to the Preserve in 2014, followed by another 25 acres in 2018. The IKC is now adding another 20 acres to bring the total Wayne Cave Preserve to over 77 acres.
- This new 20-acre acquisition connects the IKC’s Wayne Cave Preserve with the National Speleological Society’s Richard Blenz Nature Preserve. This equates to over 120 acres of combined protected karst and watershed protection!
- Protection for Sassafras Pit and Jim’s Hole caves located on the property.
- Prevents development of the Connection property and protects the watershed that drains to Blair Hollow.
- Provides an opportunity for a multi-mile trail system to extend the existing loop trails on both preserves.
- Ecologically rare communities protected.
If you are ready to make history and protect The Connection’s future - DONATE HERE
From an ecological perspective, this new expansion property is judged to be high quality. Wyatt Williams, Community Ecologist with the Division of Nature Preserves, wrote this after his May 2023 visit:
The other surface feature of note on the expansion property is a sinkhole swamp/pond that actually straddles the eastern boundary of the IKC’s current Wayne Cave Preserve. Wyatt indicated:
More photos of The Connection are available on this separate page.
Acquiring Land in Monroe County is Not Cheap
Due to the proximity to Bloomington and the recent appreciation of land in Monroe County, this acquisition will be expensive, with a project budget of $225,000 once the land, surveying, title insurance, closing, and other direct cost are included, along with an appropriate contribution to the IKC’s Stewardship Endowment fund for long-term care. While this project is the IKC’s most expensive and ambitious to date, we are very excited to pursue this significant karst property. We will be pursuing numerous grants, but we will also need significant financial support from our members and the caving community.
We appreciate your support of this acquisition; however we have reached our fundraising goal for this project. We still encourage you to use the donation button below to help support our next acquisition.
Credit card and paypal donations can be made here...
...or a check can be made payable to the IKC. Please note Land/Cave Acquisition in memo and mail to:
The IKC is a 501(c)(3) non-profit and all donations qualify as tax deductible.
Special thanks to those donors who have contributed to this project.