Opening to the public in fall 2021, the 144-acre Van Scott Nature Reserve in Beach Lake, Wayne County, PA is the new headquarters of the Delaware Highlands Conservancy, intended to be a welcoming, accessible place for people of all ages to learn about, explore, and enjoy nature. It was donated by the Van Scott family in spring 2020 and has presented a once in a lifetime opportunity for the Conservancy to establish its first permanent headquarters and to create a center for conservation education.
A former dairy farm, the property was first settled in the late 1700s and was purchased by the Van Scotts in 1994. As the stewards of this historic farm, the Conservancy will honor the land and the families who farmed it for generations while welcoming the public to visit, learn about our shared local history, and explore this beautiful Reserve.
When open, the Reserve will feature more than three miles of publicly accessible walking trails through the woods and wildflower meadows, along with two ponds, wetlands, and a tributary to Beach Lake Creek. The meadows provide important habitat for ground-nesting birds and for pollinators like butterflies and bees, while the forests on the property provide habitat for a variety of wildlife and help to protect our clean drinking water.
The Reserve will be home to the Conservancy’s year-round quality educational programming including hikes, nature walks, forestry and land management workshops, demonstration projects, and our popular winter Eagle Watch. Over time, other farm structures will be adapted for new and enhanced educational programs.
Centrally located within the Upper Delaware River region, the Van Scott Nature Reserve is a destination for residents and visitors that reflects our unique rural character and the needs of the local community.
The property is currently undergoing renovations and updates, and an announcement will be made when the Reserve is open to the public. Please check this space for updates.