Appalachian State University Nature Preserve

The Appalachian State University Nature Preserve consists of 67 acres of protected woodlands located by the heart of campus. The land was dedicated as a State Natural Area in 1999 through the North Carolina Nature Preserves Act, and serves as an outdoor classroom for students and faculty. The primary purposes of the preserve are to enable conservation, education and recreation for students, staff, and faculty.

Red Eft

The preserve is the largest contiguous forested area within the Town of Boone boundaries. The mixed hardwood forest and herbaceous community are representative of southern Appalachian flora and provide a home for hundreds of native species. Most of the forest is secondary growth that has recovered from historic deforestation and contains species indicative of Acidic Cove and Montane Seep communities. It also has several invasive species that are common in forest fragments surrounded by urban areas.  The preserve contains two headwater streams. These small, spring-fed creeks feed a main channel that flows from north to south and ultimately lead to the South Fork of the New River. You can take a virtual tour of the Nature Preserve here and here.

The preserve is used by a wide group of university community members from across all disciplines. The founding articles of dedication protect this land for the foreseeable future and prohibit significant disturbance. Please help us protect the area by adhering to the usage rules available here and posted on site. Please contact for more information.