Last week I traveled to the 61st installment in the Department of Conservation and Recreation’s Natural Area Preserve System. The Blackwater Sandhills NAP is unique in many ways, as I documented in my Sunday T-D column. It’s about an hour and a half drive from Richmond to the 2,384 acres in Isle of Wight. But the property boasts 1,000-year-old bald cypress trees, wind-deposited sandhills that only occur on the east side of the Blackwater and Nottoway rivers in Virginia, rare lilies, orchids, bats, salamanders and much more. It’s a very cool place that will now be protected from future development because of the work of groups like The Nature Conservancy, Isle of Wight County and others.
Here are some pics:
Brian van Eerden of The Nature Conservancy looks at a big bald cypress.
The Blackwater River is more of a long, winding swamp.
A type of euonymous (I believe), this bloom was amazing in the dark swamp.