The Conservancy purchased this property from Abram Keener in 2005. It is speculated that the “Shiprock” name came from a large flat rock in the nearby Pequea Creek that is said to be the size of a ship!
Planning Your Walk
A hiking trail winds through the property. The Shiprock hiking trail and property are just a short drive from Lancaster City. The trail head starts at the property sign and continues uphill through a mature forested canopy, until it loops back around to the same parking area. The total trail length is estimated at 1.07 miles.
Because of the property’s proximity to nearby housing, hunting is currently prohibited.
The wooded hillside will be maintained as it is crucial in preventing more sediment runoff into the Pequea Creek. Streambank restoration is already occurring on the north side of the property where black walnut trees have already started to regenerate and oaks will be planted to prevent future erosion. Properties like Shiprock feature an important roll of buffering our streams against sediment erosion and nutrient loading, which are caused by developments and end up in the Chesapeake Bay. Continued trail maintenance and removal of invasive plants will be ongoing.
What to See & Do
Two unnamed tributaries (one intermittent) of the Pequea Creek cut through the property. The Pequea Creek is part of the larger Susquehanna River and Chesapeake Bay watersheds.
Sections of the forest are comprised of mature second-growth forests. Several large white oak trees dot the hillside and provide a strong genetic seed source for successors. Shiprock Woods has minimal forest understory along the ravine and hilltop. The upland soil content on the property means that nutrients are very shallow and rocky, which is probably the reason the property was never planted with agricultural crops although it was surrounded by the low lying farmlands.
White-tailed deer, turkeys, foxes, grey squirrels, rabbits, and groundhogs can all be found on this property. Many species of song birds and raptors can also be spotted. Black vultures in particular, have become regulars in this area and can be seen lurking around woodlot edges and the nearby farms.
Spring: Migrating birds
Summer: Wildflowers are in bloom
Fall: Brilliant Foliage
Winter: Cross-country skiing
From Lancaster, follow US 272/222 South through Willow Street and turn left at Long Lane. Remain on Long Lane/222/741 for 3.7 miles until you turn right at Otsu Road followed by another quick right onto Shiprock Road. Travel on Shiprock Road for approximately three-fourths of a mile around a ninety degree bend where a grassy parking area can be found in between houses on the southern end of the property, which is marked by a property sign.