Hoxie Gorge is a unique natural area close to the campus yet remote from the sights and sounds of modern civilization. The primary purpose of Hoxie Gorge is to provide an opportunity for class and individual study, research and enjoyment of the natural environment. Approximately 1,000 students per year are involved in academic field study there.
Consisting of 169 acres, the Hoxie Gorge property was acquired in 1965 from three different landowners (see history); the two smaller parcels were entirely forests and the largest was an abandoned farm containing both pasture and forest.
Hoxie Gorge provides a number of different environments (stream, old-field, woodland), each with a unique set of characteristics that may warrant careful study by the biologist or geologist, or treat the casual visitor with a pleasant visual experience.
The McDermott Nature Trail provides a guided tour of the plants and animals in these varied habitats.
Several faculty and a number of their students have utilized Hoxie Gorge extensively for biological research purposes. This research has attracted more than $500,000 in grant money and resulted in 23 journal publications.
These research programs are ongoing and require that many areas of the property remain undisturbed. Of special interest are amphibian enumeration and nutrient levels of the water.
Hoxie Gorge information, along with a map of the area and the trail guide for the McDermott Nature Trail, is made available courtesy of Larry Klotz, distinguished teaching professor, biological sciences.