Rippee Conservation Area is at the junction of Rippee and Bryant Creeks in central Douglas County. This tract is about 15 miles east of Ava off Highway 14.
The site has a lively history, which includes Indian Camps, Civil War skirmishes and a large pioneer settlement supported by a major wagon road.
The forest is a mixture of oak-hickory, short leaf pine, and bottomland hardwood trees. There is a dolomite glade on a steep, south-facing slope above a 50-foot bluff to the north of Bryant Creek. Glades are rocky openings in forests or woodlands mainly on south or west slopes. Bedrock is at or near the land surface in glades, and the shallow soil layer supports dwarfed trees and nonwoody plants. Little bluestem grass and Missouri coneflower are two types of plants that grow here. There is also a seep on the glade. Plants growing here include Venus' hair fern and grass of Parnassus. The upper part of the glade is dolomite and sandstone and grades into a sandstone forest/savanna.
About 18 acres (1.5 miles of creek and buffer zone) of the Rippee Conservation Area is designated as Bryant Creek Natural Area. Bryant Creek is a high quality, small river with 15 species of fish and crayfish that occur in the Ozarks and nowhere else in the world. Those species include the Ozark shiner, Ozark madtom, bluestripe darter, golden crayfish, and Ozark crayfish. Bryant Creek also offers excellent fishing, and 43 kinds of fish have been found in its water. Some of the popular sport fish include: largemouth and smallmouth bass, sunfish, bluegill, goggle eye, and channel catfish.
During your visit to Rippee Conservation Area you may notice forest improvement practices designed to improve tree growth, quality and variety. The practices improve wildlife habitat and help maintain watershed quality. Any physical disturbance is temporary. Wildlife habitat management includes converting fescue fields into wildlife-friendly grasses, constructing brush piles and the planting of food plots.
Turkey, deer, quail, rabbits, river otters, squirrels, and bald eagles live within or visit the area.