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The Miami University community and the public are invited to enjoy the recreational and educational benefits of over 15 miles of hiking trails that traverse the Natural Areas. The areas close at dark. Please protect plants and animals by remaining on the trails. Litterbags are available at trailheads for litter removal. Fires, hunting, and camping are not permitted anywhere and bicycling is permitted only in Peffer Park.


Bachelor Wildlife and Game Reserve

During the twenty years that Dr. Joseph M. Bachelor served on the Miami faculty, he accumulated land adjacent to the University. He lived on the land, farmed it, and in 1947, gave 416 acres to create the Bachelor Wildlife and Game Reserve, the backbone of the natural areas. The Bachelor Wildlife and Game Reserve is managed to establish and preserve habitat diversity for native plants and wildlife. A variety of animals live in the Reserve including beaver that frequent Bachelor pond.

This land encompasses a number of interesting features and attractions. Some of these include the scenic Harkers Run Creek spanned by a 45' swinging bridge, wood ducks nesting at Bachelor Pond, pinewoods and old growth woodlands of beech, maple and oaks. Over six miles of trails connect these interesting areas. See images

College Woods

College Woods is a 16 acre second growth woodlot with many trees that had been a part of Western College for many years. Over time, the area became landlocked and was not assessable until an easement agreement with the City of Oxford was established in 2004. This opened up the area for hiking trails (Built by Matt Dean; Boy Scout Troup 999) and the opportunity for the public to enjoy this beautiful area. Many of the trees are over 100 years old. The woods contain many interesting species including: white ash, american beech, black cherry, slippery elm, shagbark hickory, American hophornbeam, chinquapin oak, shingle oak, pawpaw, sassafras, black tupelo and black walnut. A connecting trail from College Woods (Built by Matt Glabb; Boy Scout Troup 999) provides access to the other trails in the Natural Areas. Access is from McKee Avenue just outside Oxford off of route 27.

See images  College Woods Update

Reinhart Reserve

In 1991, Dr. and Mrs. Roy Reinhart donated 45 acres of land adjacent to the intersection of Oxford-Milford Road and Bonham Road . Amenities include old growth woodlands, meadows, springs, streams and scenic overlooks with trails connecting all. Images coming soon.

Silvoor Biological Sanctuary

Silvoor Biological Sanctuary is a 2.5-acre tract of land donated in 1978 to the University by Dr. Robert A. Hefner. Dr. Hefner and his wife, Ilo, spent many years converting this former town dump into a beautiful sanctuary

In 1980, Mr. and Mrs. Stuart Fitton donated a portion of their land, which was part of the Sanctuary, to Miami with the understanding that it remain a part of Silvoor Biological Sanctuary. The sanctuary houses an extensive wildflower garden with over 60 species on showy display seen during the scheduled walks or casual walks each spring. See images

Kramer Woods

Paul and Edith Kramer donated this twelve-acre tract of land to the University in 1987 that is typical of a mature woodlot in southwest Ohio . It is maintained in its natural state. Hiking trails are continuous with those of the Bachelor Reserve. Kramer Woods' trail provides a variety of hills and slopes for hikers to climb. Upon reaching the top, hikers are rewarded with a stunning view of the forest below. Images coming soon.

Women's Recreational Association and Cabin Area

This twenty-six acre tract of land is north of Bachelor and Reinhart Reserves and is located on Oxford-Milford Road . One half of the land is a mature woodlands providing access to Harker's Run Creek. The other half of the land is an excellent example of old-field succession. A circular trail rewards hikers with the pleasures of the scenic woods. Access is available by reservation only and can be made by calling: Office of Student Activities and Organization Leadership, 356 Shriver Center, 529 2266. See images

Four Mile Creek Area

Purchased in 1962, the area comprises about 100 acres of land. Miami 's riding stables are on this tract of land and an additional 20 acres are designated as pasture for the horses. Ten acres are designated for the Miami University 's Recycling Center . Thirty-five acres are cultivated for agricultural purposes, the proceeds of which go to help maintain the Natural Areas. The University Grounds Department also maintains a small nursery, where trees are being grown before they are transplanted to campus. Along this route, hikers can also get a close-up view of the DeWitt house, the oldest standing log cabin in the Oxford area. See images

Western Woods

The Western Woods comprises approximately one hundred acres located on the eastern and southern sides of Western Campus. There is a hiking trail through this beautiful woodland area that travels hills and valleys through a magnificent stand of oaks, beech and maples. Access is from Western Campus. Images coming soon.

Beck Reserve

In 1997 the University received 41 acres south of Rte. 73 for 40 percent of its appraised value. This land was part of the estate of the late Dr. William and Virginia Beck. Their son, Michael Beck and his wife Noreen, stipulated in the transaction that the land was not to be developed and was to be managed similarly to the Bachelor Wildlife Reserve. Today, trails travel along Four Mile Creek up hillsides with beautiful views of the valley below and through mature woodlands. Images coming soon.



Peffer Woods

Once a pastureland and farm, this 80-acre plot was purchased as two parcels in 1955 and 1966 by Miami University . Later, Fred C. Yager generously donated money to Miami University in order to develop a park on this land south of campus along Highway 27. Yager stipulated that the park was to be developed in memory of his nephew, G. Maurice Peffer. William Amos and Dorothy R. Amos contributed funds for the park's development as well.

A small portion of the land is a recreational park. The balance is maintained as a natural area to promote outdoor recreation, education, and research in the natural sciences. Common activities include hiking, snow skiing, mountain biking and birding.

A unique program is conducted by Miami University's Outdoor Pursuit Center. This outdoor experiential program allows groups and individuals the opportunity to participate in a series of activities involving mental, physical, and emotional risk taking in a controlled setting.  It consists of an aesthetically designed series of ropes, cables, and logs combined in such a way as to simulate challenges that might be found in a natural setting.  Safety and cooperation, as well as individual achievement, are essential to the program.

Timothy J. Marcum Trail

The Timothy Marcum Memorial Center and Trail have been made possible in part by a gift from Joseph L. and Sara Sloneker Marcum of Hamilton , Ohio in loving memory of their son Tim. Directly behind the Marcum Memorial Center is the Timothy J. Marcum Trail. It runs through a tract of steep slopes and flood plains that extend south to State Route 73. This natural area is extremely important because it lends additional protection to Four Mile Creek, and contains excellent habitats for study and research. The views from the trails are inviting in all seasons. See images

Ecology Research Center

The Ecology Research Center (ERC), located just North of Oxford was founded in 1969 as a site for ecological research and educational activities. The ERC encompasses 170 acres of old fields, woodlots, hedgerows, agricultural plots, and experimental ponds and is managed by a Director and an internal policy committee appointed by the Dean of the College of Arts and Science. Ecology Research Center


For questions regarding educational, research or donor opportunities, contact:

Dr. Douglas H. Taylor

Chair, Bachelor Reserve and Other Natural Areas Committee
Department of Zoology
(513) 529 3100

For questions or comments regarding trails, contact:

James E. Reid

Field Manager, Natural Areas

(513) 524 2197

Website: www.muohio.edu/naturalareas