Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway

Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway.  A scenic network of water, roads and history.

Have you noticed the Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway signs?

The sign shows the state of Delaware and our state flower, the peach blossom. Scenic byway designation offers benefits to those living and working in the community, and helps to protect our water and natural areas while preserving the unique scenic, historical and cultural characteristics in the byway.

A scenic byway is...

A scenic byway travels through an area that has special scenic, historic, natural, cultural, or archeological qualities. It’s a road that offers an alternative to busy highways while telling a story about an area’s heritage, recreational options and sense of place.

Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway is unique

The Byway is comprised of 28 secondary roads within the Red Clay Creek watershed and is the first in the U.S. to be based on the watershed model. This unique model strengthens the communities’ ability to protect the water quality of Red Clay Creek by preserving the land in the watershed.

The Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway preserves and protects the unique historic, scenic, and natural qualities of the Red Clay watershed, which includes Hockessin, Mt. Cuba, Coverdale Farm Preserve, Auburn Heights, Wilmington & Western RR and many homes and businesses. It supports river cleanups and graffiti prevention and can help buildings in your neighborhood uphold an appearance that is aligned with the historic and scenic aspects of The Red Clay Scenic Valley Byway.

So much to see and do here

Along the Byway, roughly located between Routes 48 and 52, you can explore the forest of the Red Clay Ravine Natural Area, and hike through woodlands, meadows, and marsh at the Delaware Nature Society’s Ashland Nature Center. Learn more about native plants at the Mt. Cuba Center and visit Auburn Heights Preserve to see the largest collection of operating steam cars in the world. Steam train enthusiasts can ride on the Historic Red Clay, Inc (Wilmington and Western) railway from Greenbank to Hockessin.

Help us preserve this treasure

Delaware Nature Society manages the Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway program and chairs the Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway Alliance, and is the voice for the Byway and its residents.

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Experience the scenic drive

Take a drive on Rt. 82, from Pennsylvania state line to Yorklyn, Delaware.

Movie of a beautiful drive on the Red Clay Valley Scenic Byway in Delaware

Our history of land preservation

Since moving its headquarters to Ashland in 1976, Delaware Nature Society has placed high priority on the permanent preservation of the Red Clay Valley. The valley includes spectacular natural areas first described by us in the mid-1970s: Red Clay Ravine, Red Clay Creek, Burrows Run, Coverdale Woods, and Red Clay Reservation (upon which Ashland Nature Center lies). These natural areas sustain an abundance of plants and animals and contain some of the richest old growth forest in the Red Clay Creek watershed.