With the transition to warmer weather, we get the opportunity to watch the environment around us flourish. From emerging wildlife to sprouting flowers, we have the chance to watch nature transform as springtime makes its debut. Many of our guests love to go offsite to major Hocking Hills attractions to hike and explore but there’s somewhere off the beaten path we want to spotlight this week on Quoth the Raven. Their mantra? “Making the world a better place one butterfly at a time.”
Butterfly Ridge is located just under 30 minutes from the Castle at 17864 OH-374 in Rockbridge. Owned and operated by Chris and Kris Kline, the idea for Butterfly Ridge came to life around 2014 and officially spread its wings and opened in 2017.
After realizing he didn’t want to spend his life commuting day after day, Chris decided to explore the options they had in front of them. He had prior experience with butterflies and both himself and Kris were looking for a way to spend more quality time with their land, only 5 acres at the time. After making the commitment they gave it all they had and Butterfly Ridge came to fruition. One of Chris’ favorite parts of the job is working with the interns every summer since there is no place quite like Butterfly Ridge! They get a unique opportunity to learn hands-on and he says that more often than not, they teach him and Kris a thing or two throughout that time as well.
There are different parts of Butterfly Ridge and each area is specialized to attract a different species of butterfly. They are now in the process of converting their 21-acres into an even bigger and better butterfly haven. Over the past year and in the years to come, the plan is to clear half of the forest down in the area to create meadows, wooded openings, and edge habit for butterflies.
What is there to do at Butterfly Ridge?
Aside from Tuesdays when Butterfly Ridge is closed, there are guided tours every day at 1 PM and 3 PM that take you on the 1-mile trail. If you’d like to explore alone, you are also welcomed to do so although we’ve read on some reviews that there is no replacing the knowledge and passion Chris and Kris have during the tour!
If you’re an early riser you can attend a bird walk on Sundays beginning at 9 AM. And if that isn’t enough, you can check out their mothing nights. Here’s some information from Chris himself:
“On Saturdays June – August (except first Saturday of month) we do moth lighting (The Mothing Zone). That goes from 9PM to midnight. We use high powered lights to attract moths to white sheets. On a hot, humid night in July we may have over 150 species of moths on a sheet! For families that would rather walk the trail on their own we offer a scavenger hunt/treasure chest game that the kids really enjoy.”
What can I bring home from Butterfly Ridge?
Some of the most popular gift shop items are plush butterflies and sequin butterfly keychains but if you want to snag something a little more hands on, you are actually able to purchase the butterfly bait they make. If you’re looking for a chuckle, you can click here to read more about the early stages of creating the bait. There was one slight blunder that made the creation of the bait a great story to tell again and again! It works well with butterflies that are normally rotten fruit and sap feeders. Aside from material goods, we know you will bring home wonderful memories from Butterfly Ridge that you certainly last a lifetime.
Now is your chance to book a stay at the Castle and add Butterfly Ridge to your trip itinerary. Make a day of it and check out the Nature Center, enjoy the trail on site, and make a stop in the prairie to see what butterflies you can spot. There are two peak seasons for butterflies at Butterfly Ridge: late May/early June and then once more in late July/early August. See you this spring!