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Janet Gallogly Allegany Wildlands

Janet Gallogly Allegany Wildlands
Location: South Valley, NY, Cattaraugus County
Size: 185 acres

Note: A 1.7-mile hiking trail continuously ascends up a relatively steep hill. This is a moderate to difficult hike. 

The Janet Gallogly Allegany Wildlands is a stunning 185-acre forest located only a few hundred feet from the Allegany Reservoir, on the opposite shore from Allegany State Park. The forest is home to some of the few surviving American Chestnut trees in the region, as well as incredible wildlife. 

Refuge for Amazing Wildlife

The Janet Gallogly Allegany Wildlands is home to a spectacular diversity of plants and animals. During the last ice age, the glaciers never covered this forest, keeping intact the ancient soils found here. The unique plant community we see today gradually developed over the last 10,000 years as plants moved farther north. In the early 1800s, the land was purchased by the Sluga family from the Holland Land Company. Generations of their family have been its stewards ever since. When they first purchased the land, it was covered by White Oaks, with clusters of American Chestnuts. By the 1930s or 40s, a blight had killed off nearly every American Chestnut in North America, including those at this forest. Amazingly, several 60-foot-tall American Chestnut trees remain on the property, along with dozens of other smaller American Chestnuts. Large oaks, a threatened fern, and even a rare orchid also grow here. Underneath the forest canopy, black bear and bobcat roam the ridges and ravines. Majestic Bald Eagles soar overhead, colorful songbirds nest in the tall trees, and playful river otters search for fish in the nearby reservoir.

Read about the Janet Gallogly Allegany Wildlands in the Buffalo News.

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The Western New York Wildway

The Wildway will be a connected corridor of protected lands that stretches from the vast forests of northern Pennsylvania to the Great Lakes, through to the Finger Lakes, the Adirondacks, and beyond. It will form part of the Eastern Wildway which runs all the way from Canada to the Gulf of Mexico. The Wildway will allow plants and animals to migrate across the land as they once did, it will allow those that have disappeared from our region to return home, and it will allow those in need to move around to new homes as climate changes. The Allegany Wildlands is already connected to 10,000 acres of protected state land, nestled between Allegany State Park and South Valley State Forest, and it is a significant link in a future Western New York Wildway.

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