Located along the Mississippi River, this 46-acre preserve contains a representative spectrum of the area’s landscape features and natural communities including limestone bluffs, sinkholes, bottomland forests, and upland hill prairies. The Sanctuary was dedicated as an Illinois nature Preserve in 1993 and was donated to The Nature Institute by James and Aune Nelson in 1997.
In addition to the natural features of the land, The Nature Institute manages a large arboretum planted by Jim Nelson, which includes a variety of trees. Our stewardship efforts on the preserve include exotic species control, expansion of the hill prairie, photo monitoring and prescribed fire in the forest and prairie areas. The sanctuary has an extensive network of trails and is used regularly for environmental education and outreach.