Forney Creek Conservation Area | Catawba Lands Conservancy

Forney Creek Conservation Area

Nestled in a quickly developing area of Lincoln County, this conservation area provides important protection for an impaired stream, Forney Creek. Starting at Sally’s YMCA, a 2.5-mile segment of the Carolina Thread Trail allows visitors to explore hardwood and floodplain forests, as well as waterfowl ponds. In time, the trail will extend further upstream and downstream.

The Conservancy is taking steps toward conducting a stream restoration to improve the aquatic habitat of Forney Creek. This area has a significant history of timbering, farming, and stream straightening, which contributed to the degradation of Forney Creek as a 303d impaired stream. As Lincoln County grows, conserving a large vegetative buffer and restoring Forney Creek will be important to improving water quality and mitigating the increased storm-water runoff.
Sally’s Y Preserve

Conservation in this area began when David and Jo Clark conserved the Sally’s Y Preserve in memory of their daughter Sally McKenzie Clark.  This preserve is open to the public and has become a destination for children at the Sally’s YMCA to explore nature.  Located on the preserve are two segments of the Carolina Thread Trail: Kathryn G. Clark Trail and Forney Creek Trail. The Sally’s YMCA also maintains a 1.6-mile fitness trail.

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Catawba Springs Preserve

To the north of Sally’s Y Preserve, Catawba Springs Preserve safeguards water quality and wildlife habitat. Members of the Catawba Springs Hunt Club conserved a portion of their property, including two man-made wildlife ponds. The ponds are an important refuge for migrating waterfowl and salamanders like the marbled salamander, identified by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission as a priority species for conservation.  Now, the preserve and its wildlife ponds are available to the public to enjoy from the Forney Creek Trail, a segment of the Carolina Thread Trail.

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