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Wisconsin State Natural Areas Program Kingston Pines (No. 578)

Kingston Pines

Photo by Thomas A. Meyer



Within the Meadow Valley Wildlife Area, Juneau County. T20N-R2E, Section 17-20. 535 acres.



Within rolling, sandy moraine supporting boggy wetlands, Kingston Pines features a mature pine and oak forest of red pine, white pine, Hill's oak, and black oak. The oldest pines occur on nearly flat ground between Big Lake and the Kingston Flowage. Both the pine and oak species are reproducing well. The shrub layer is variable and consists of huckleberry, American hazelnut, and prairie willow. Drier portions of the site have typical central pine-oak ground layer species, whereas the wetter places contain botanical disjuncts such as long sedge and Massachusetts fern. Other ground layer species include early low blueberry, whorled yellow loosestrife, and bracken fern. Scattered around the site are extensive patches of running prairie sedge and Pennsylvania sedge. Boggy areas have good populations of central poor fen indicators such as yellow screw-stem and clustered sedge. Several Species of Greatest Conservation Need nest in the older pine and bog including least flycatcher and Canada warbler. Many bird species are found at or near their southern range limit including northern raven, hermit thrush, black-throated green warbler, yellow-rumped warbler, and white-throated sparrow. Patches of old-growth white pine are evident within the site. Kingston Pines is owned by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and leased by the DNR. It was designated a State Natural Area in 2008.


Driving directions

From the intersection of 1st Avenue N, County H and Highway 173 in Mather, go north on 1st Avenue North (Cranberry Road) about 4.9 miles, then southeast on 4th Street W (Jim Standing Water Road) about 0 6 miles to the northwest corner of the natural area. The best pines are located another 0.5 miles south.


Kingston Pines is owned by:

  • WDNR


The DNR's state natural areas program is comprised of lands owned by the state, private conservation organizations, municipalities, other governmental agencies, educational institutions and private individuals. While the majority of SNAs are open to the public, access may vary according to individual ownership policies. Public use restrictions may apply due to public safety, or to protect endangered or threatened species or unique natural features. Lands may be temporarily closed due to specific management activities. Users are encouraged to contact the landowner for more specific details.

The data shown on these maps have been obtained from various sources, and are of varying age, reliability, and resolution. The data may contain errors or omissions and should not be interpreted as a legal representation of legal ownership boundaries.


Very few State Natural Areas have public facilities, but nearly all are open for a variety of recreational activities as indicated below. Generally, there are no picnic areas, restrooms, or other developments. Parking lots or designated parking areas are noted on individual SNA pages and maps. Trails, if present, are typically undesignated footpaths. If a developed trail is present, it will normally be noted on the SNA map and/or under the "Access" tab. A compass and topographic map or a GPS unit are useful tools for exploring larger, isolated SNAs.

Allowable activities

In general, the activities listed below are allowed on all DNR-owned SNA lands. Exceptions to this list of public uses, such as SNAs closed to hunting, are noted under the "Access" tab above and posted with signs on site.

  • Hiking
  • Fishing
  • Cross country skiing
  • Hunting
  • Trapping

Prohibited activities

  • Camping and campfires
  • Collecting of animals (other than legally harvested species), non-edible fungi, rocks, minerals, fossils, archaeological artifacts, soil, downed wood, or any other natural material, alive or dead. Collecting for scientific research requires a permit issued by the DNR
  • Collecting of plants including seeds, roots or other non-edible parts of herbaceous plants such as wildflowers or grasses
  • Geocaching
  • Horseback riding
  • Rock climbing
  • Vehicles, including bicycles, ATVs, aircraft, and snowmobiles except on trails and roadways designated for their use

For rules governing state-owned SNAs and other state lands, please consult Chapter NR 45 Wis. Admin. Code [exit DNR]

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Last revised: Monday, June 10, 2019