The Oleniy Nature Park is located in the northernmost part of the Krasninsky district of the Lipetsk region, in the vicinity of Sukhodol and Nikolskoye villages. If you look at the park from the height of the bird’s flight, you will find a spacious, eye-catching and windy nature, typical of the Central Russian Upland: hilly fields, forests, a plain rugged by deep branching ravines. Along the northernmost border of the park, the Semenyok River flows, now overflowing with rather narrow reaches, or a narrow stream.
The territory between the rivers Pines and Beautiful Swords, where the Oleniy natural park is located today, was inhabited by man in ancient times. People lived here more than 20 thousand years ago, during the last, Valdai glaciation. The climate was colder. The main activity of people was hunting for large mammals: mammoths, woolly rhinos, bison, musk oxen and reindeer.
The ancient oak forests alternated with the mountable grassland. The places here were wooded up to the 18th century – until the beginning of the era of human activity. The steppes were plowed, and the thick thickets of oak-ash-lime trees were cut down mercilessly under arable land. The natural landscape has been radically transformed. Forests and steppes gave way to fields. Confirmations can be found in the story “Sukhodol” by Ivan Bu¬nin, who visited these places: “In ancient times there were forests everywhere. People who had made their way two hundred years ago along our roads made their way through thick forests … Under Grandpa, the picture was different: semi-steppe, bare hillsides, rye, oats, buckwheat in the fields, rare hollow branches on the fields, and on Sukhodolsky top – only white naked. From the forest there was only one Troshin forest. ” Bunin called these places a fertile under-steppe. Meadow steppe, and on it – islands of the forest. Today the forest occupies less than 3% of the park area. On the composition of the forest tracts say their names – Bereznik, Lipnyaki, Chernoles.