Photo courtesy of Vince Pellegrini

About the Park

Shenks Ferry Wildflower Preserve is a nature preserve located in Conestoga, PA and is open daily from dawn to dusk. The preserve is renowned for its spring ephemeral wildflowers that bloom annually from late March – early June, peaking in April and May. Some of these notable wildflowers include Susquehanna trillium, Red Columbine, Wild Geranium, Mayapple, Virginia Bluebells, and more. In total, over 70 species of wildflowers grow in the sheltered riverine that cuts through the preserve. In addition, Shenks also hosts more than 50 species of birds and is an excellent area to observe wildlife.

The one-mile Wildflower Trail is a smooth, relatively flat trail that runs along Grubb Creek, offering experienced and novice hikers alike the opportunity to experience the wildflower season in the spring. This trail can also be accessed via the Enola Low Grade Trail. During the peak season, it is recommended to visit the preserve on weekdays when crowds are minimal. A kiosk and restrooms are available at the trailhead. A map of the preserve and its trail system as well as a wildflower guide can be accessed below in the resources.

The preserve encourages visitors to practice Leave No Trace principals and littering is prohibited. Additionally, harvesting wildflowers from the preserve is prohibited as it could negatively impact the plants. Visitors are also required to stay on the trail in order to avoid tramping on plants and to protect the wildflower community. Please refer to the wildflower guide and map under resources for a full list of rules and regulations. This property is managed by the Lancaster County Conservancy.

Photo courtesy of Vince Pellegrini

Parking & Trail Access

The Preserve address is 857 Green Hill Rd S, Conestoga, PA 17516.

From I-83 South: Take exit 21 and merge onto US-30 East/Arsenal Rd. Continue for 12.9 miles. After crossing the river, take the exit towards PA-441/Columbia/Marietta. Within the next mile, turn right onto Linden Street, turn left onto North 2nd St, and right onto Bridge St. Bridge St will turn left and become PA-441 South/North Front St. Continue for 3.6 miles and stay straight onto Water St. Water St turns slightly left to become to become Herr St. Turn right onto River Rd and continue for 2.9 miles. Turn right to stay on River Rd and continue or 3.6 miles. Make another right to stay on River Rd. and continue for 1.4 miles. Turn right onto Green Hill Rd and continue for 0.2 miles. Turn left to stay on Green Hill Rd and continue for 0.2 miles. Turn right onto Green Hill Road South and continue for 1.3 miles. Parking area will be located in front of Gate. Note: Green Hill Road is rugged and parking is limited.

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