Protection of natural lands not only retains habitat for Washington’s native plants and wildlife, but also offers humans benefits through ecological services like carbon storage, groundwater recharge, flood and drought mitigation, and storm-water filtration.
SHADOW Lake Nature Preserve is committed to preserving and protecting land and sensitve ecosystems in a rapidly urbanizing corner of King County. Join us in our preservation efforts, today!
Ecosystems & Habitats
Shadow Lake Bog
The famous Shadow Lake Bog is the jewel and founding inspiration of the Nature Preserve. This 5,000 to 10,000-year-old, peat-moss bog is a remnant of the Puget Lobe Glacier, which once covered the majority of Western Washington. SHADOW Lake Bog is the only spaghnum-hemlock peat bog known to be under protection in Washington state. The bog’s unique soil and water qualities mean that it is home to plants found nowhere else in Washington.
Lakefront and Scrub/shrub Wetland
Along the banks of Shadow Lake, shrubby vegetation lines the shore. This low-growing vegetation shades the banks of the lake, cools the water, and supports invertebrates and other life. Look for salmonberry, Douglas spirea, willows, and red osier dogwood growing along the sides of the bank. Scrub/shrub wetlands are ideal locations to spot local birds, as they nest and fish in this area. This area is great for seeing mammal tracks as well, as the wetlands are a source of drinking water. The soil in this area of the Nature Preserve is flooded during the growing season with still, standing water.
Mixed Conifer/Deciduos Forest
SHADOW Lake Nature Preserve’s upland area contains a healthly mixed conifer/decidous forest habitat. This habitat is composed of a mixture of second-growth forest and a few old-growth trees. This forested habitat can be seen with a walk along the Woods Trail. The Woods Trail offers views of mature western red cedar trees, sword ferns, and salmonberry growing along the side of seasonal streams. The headwaters of Jenkins Creek also originates in this area, carrying cool clean water into through Soos Creek and the Green River, out to the Puget Sound through Elliott Bay.