KNLT Expands to Virginia with Gift of Land

In celebration of Earth Day, KNLT is pleased to announce our expansion to Virginia with the newly established Stone Branch Preserve. The 100-acre tract in Lee County on Cumberland Mountain was generously donated over the winter. These newly protected wildlands along the north face of the mountain safeguard forest habitat along Stone Branch at the headwaters of the Powell River, a tributary of the Tennessee River. The forests and freshwater systems of this region are globally significant and vital to sustaining all life on Earth. 

Scarlet Tanagers ~ Jennifer Honeycutt

Cumberland Mountain is a 97-mile forested ridgeline that parallels Pine Mountain to the southeast. The mountain is critical habitat for thousands of plant and animal species including 139 that are considered rare. Cumberland Mountain is partially protected by a matrix of conservation lands that include Cumberland Gap National Historic Park, Jefferson National Forest and several state parks, preserves and wildlife management areas.  

“My spouse C.V. (Bennett) served on the KNLT Board in its infancy and believed those in the coal industry had a responsibility to preserve too. My sons and I continue this legacy with this now protected land on Cumberland Mountain. We are thankful this special place is now safeguarded and support the continued mission of KNLT.” ~ Blanche Bennett, landowner 

KNLT has partnered to protect lands along Cumberland Mountain for years. Over the last year KNLT has established two of its own preserves, Panther Gap and Stone Branch, along a stretch of the mountain that was previously without conservation areas.

KNLT is grateful for the support of individual donors, foundations, and partners. We thank the Imperiled Bat Conservation Fund (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Kentucky Field Office) for making this project possible. 

Projects like these would not be possible without the support of our donors! Join our movement and give today:


4/22/24 — KNLT Expands to Virginia with Stone Branch Preserve (PDF)

Cover photo: Stone Gap Preserve ~ Zac Brown

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