Barrens Natural Area Preserve
The Cleveland Barrens Natural Area Preserve in southwestern Virginia contains a series of significant dolomite barrens, thirteen rare plant species, and three rare insect species. The preserves 1288 acres lie within the Clinch River Valley, one of the top six biodiversity hotspots in the United States. One of the most unique features of the preserve is a globally rare community type known as dolomite barrens. Four significant barrens occur on steep southwest-facing slopes. These unusual openings in the surrounding forest canopy are characterized by thin, rocky soils and dominated by native warm season grasses such as Indian grass (Sorghastrum nutans), big bluestem (Andropogon gerardii), and little bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium var. scoparium).
The preserve now has public access to three miles of hiking trails, including an overview of the Clinch River, and handicapped access to Tank Hollow Falls. The parking lot has 5 spaces, plus one handicapped spot. A full parking area indicates that the preserve has reached capacity. If all spaces are taken when you arrive, please return later when it’s less crowded. The address is: 200 Tank Hollow Rd., Cleveland, VA, 24225. Preserve hours are sunrise to sunset.
Part or all of the preserve may be periodically closed for resource protection or prescribed burning activities.