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Sunday, July 26, 2015

Little Trails, Little Pleasures

Apple River Canyon State Park is not a hiking destination, but does have four different short hiking trails that were a good warm-up for me to begin and end my two days there.

On the 1 mile Pine Ridge loop I climbed the bluff quickly to get my heartrate going and my metabolism roaring.  I didn't stop for more than a couple of seconds here and there to snap a few quick pitures with my point and shoot.  Sunset was coming soon and I didn't want to be climbing down the bluff in the dark!

Monarda fistulosa (Wild Bergamot)

Tall Bellflower was everywhere here, looking blue or purple depending on the light.

Campanula americana, Tall Bellflower

Also plentiful was sunny patches of Yellow Jewelweed.

 Imatiens Pallida, Yellow Jewelweed

Also a mile loop, the Primrose Trail could be accessed from the bottom of the bluff or from the campground on top of the bluff.  I walked this one quickly in the morning, using the staircase to get that burst of energy I was looking for.

A small patch of dry prairie remnant was being preserved between the campground and the bluff's edge, where False Foxglove and Culver's Root hung on as a reminder of the past.  Hard to imagine this area full of prairies loaded with wildflowers instead of farms with corn stretching for miles across the hills.

Aureolaria pedicularia, Yellow False Foxglove

Veronicastrum virginicum, Culver's Root

The woods were quiet, no mosquitoes buzzing, and little traffic passed nearby to distract with modern noises. I hated to leave, and if there had been longer trails to explore maybe I wouldn't have!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful pictures Pam. I was interested in the jewel weed. Ours is always orange so I didn't know it could be yellow but I may have seen some here in the park that I didn't identify. So thanks for the tip. I love the angle you got on the mushroom. Looks like I could walk right under there and stand out of the rain.