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Crow Creek nature trail offers peace, serenity

The informally named Pump House Pond is located near the center of the Crow Creek nature trail. There are two piers overlooking this hand dug pond that dates back to the late 1800s (Photo by Airman 1st Class Daryl Knee).

The informally named Pump House Pond is located near the center of the Crow Creek nature trail. There are two piers overlooking this hand dug pond that dates back to the late 1800s (Photo by Airman 1st Class Daryl Knee).

F.E. Warren AFB, Wyo. -- The Crow Creek nature trail offers a home to a unique variety of wildlife, plant life and landscapes. Whether it's the endangered Preble's meadow jumping mouse, the federally protected Colorado butterfly plant or a source of drinking water created more than a hundred years ago, Warren provides a haven for all the different aspects of the creek.

The trail opened in 1990 and is positioned around a portion of Crow Creek that has been in regular upkeep. It winds down a path near different types of well maintained vegetation and scenes, said John Wright, chief of environmental restoration.

"Our segment of Crow Creek represents the better preserved portion of the creek today," Mr. Wright said. "It presents a good image of what it would have looked like back then."

Located in the Fam Camp area, the trail begins with an interpretive sign that gives helpful information on what to do and bring during a walk through nature. The sign reads, "Good nature observers always take binoculars, notebook and pencil to record what they observe. Blend into the surroundings, move slowly, stop often, walk quietly and listen."

Mr. Wright encourages nature enthusiasts to stay on the trail as to not disturb the wildlife but enjoy it nonetheless.

"Go several times a year," Mr. Wright said. "The atmosphere will change. Beavers tend to dam the creek at certain times of the year. In spring, there is an abundance of bird species."

Crow Creek provides habitat for a large number of animals including beavers, whitetail deer, pronghorn, raccoons, bats and hundreds of birds, said Cathy Pesenti, natural resource manager.

The informally named Pump House Pond, located in the middle of the nature walk, portrays a time when the base used this very lake as one of the main sources of water. Constructed in the late 1800s, military members treated the hand dug pit as one of the primary drinking spots.

There are two piers overlooking the pond. While fishing is allowed, swimming can be dangerous as the water is about eight feet deep in some spots, Mr. Wright said.

"Just get out there and enjoy it," Mr. Wright said. "That's why it was put there: for people to go see it and learn a little bit about the importance of wetlands. It's a really neat area to walk."

"The nature trail is a great asset for the base. It's a great place to go for a few minutes of tranquility, especially in the fall when the leaves are changing color," Mrs. Pesetni said.
For any suggestions or improvements to the nature trail, call Mrs. Pesenti at 773-5494.