At the headwaters of a famous limestone trout stream south of Carlisle in Cumberland County sits a natural wetland and 'spring garden'. In addition to the plentiful natural beauty of the Letort Spring Garden Preserve, an 1881 Pennsylvania bank barn (now listed on the National Register), and associated 1820s springhouse, are major features of the Preserve.
In 2018, the Central PA Conservancy (CPC) acquired the site of the Letort Spring Garden Preserve. CPC is currently working to rehabilitate historic structures, improve access and interpretation, and restore native plant communities and wildlife habitat at the Preserve.
Guests can enjoy the former watercress farm as a nature preserve, historic site, and public park. It is complemented by connected lands and trails owned and managed by Cumberland Valley Trout Unlimited, Letort Regional Authority, Carlisle Borough, and South Middleton Township.
The roughly two mile Letort Nature Trail bisects the Letort Spring Garden Preserve. The trail runs parallel to the east branch of Letort Spring Run from LeTort Park in Carlisle to its southern terminus on South Spring Garden Street. A one mile extension to Heisers Lane in South Middleton Township is in progress. An additional one-mile extension further south from the Spring Garden trailhead extends the trail toward Boiling Springs, the Appalachian Trail, and the Yellow Breeches Creek.