Wednesday, June 28, 2017

The Kind Of Nature I'm Looking For

I know most people like the big pavement walking trails that I featured a couple of posts ago, but now I'll show you my kind of trails. This is my kind of nature. I like going to the places nobody else goes. I like going deep into the forest.

It's so quiet when you get into places like this. The only things here are you and nature. And I like the feeling that I could get lost in a large forest. It adds to the fun of eventually finding my way through. Such a wonderful feeling.

This above is the first trail I saw into the forest at Bacon Creek Park. Somebody made this trail, but nobody else was in a hurry to explore it. I knew I would be the only one in there. Everybody else would be out by the lake or on one of the pavement trails where it felt a lot safer.

Where this narrow dirt trail went showed that it wasn't very far to reach open territory again, but that was in only one direction. The first picture in my post shows this wild area stretches very far. And I saw a trail going down there too. I'll explore that one more in future visits.

There's something about standing in the middle of a quiet forest that gives me a thrill. When I know I've reached the deepest part of a forest I stop and look straight up and take deep breaths. It gives me the feeling of pure positive contentment and happiness.

This last trail is one that has been barely traveled. The plant life is growing across it again. I always make sure I take trails like this. Sometimes they lead to the best stuff. I can't tell you how many times I've found hidden rivers at the end of these little trails. I don't know why these trails are abandoned.

In the forest is where I find the best wildlife. The animals don't really come out until you visit a lot. That's when they get used to your presence and can learn if you are a threat or not. When you are a dangerous visitor to their home they have to be cautious.

So the forest seemed very still on my first visit. The animals didn't know me yet. Yet. Soon enough they will find out that I am no threat and they will make their presence known to me. It's always a great feeling to know when you are welcome. I'll talk to you later.

Monday, June 26, 2017

My Wild Bison Sighting

I had a feeling I was going to see something good, so I planned a drive through Broken Kettle Grasslands. This is the place where the wild bison live. Most of the time you never see them, but I was feeling lucky today.

The pictures I have today aren't the best. I only had my phone with me. It doesn't have the powerful zoom that my big camera does. It still did okay though. You can at least see the bison. I'll take my big one with me next time.

This was actually the closest bison I've seen at this place. They're usually much farther away. What you see in the pictures here is how I saw it. The zoom on the phone did just enough to match the eye. I was actually close enough that this creature could hear me talk. It knew I was there.

You may be thinking that you've seen bison before already. But this is a different kind of sighting. This isn't an ordinary, everyday farm bison, which I've shown you before. This is a wild bison. Not many people can say they've seen one of these.

I saw many more good things this day. Some I'll share with you soon, and some that I just won't have time. So some things will unfortunately only ever be seen by me. I wish I had time to share everything. So many good everyday adventures make it all so fun though.

Anybody could do this. That's what I keep saying. But not anybody does it. I do. I wish everybody with the resources would try. These everyday adventures give me so much peace of mind. I always come away refreshed and ready for the world again. And ready for nature again. I'll talk to you later.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Walking Trails At The Park

I want to show you some cool walking trails today. These are located at my latest discovery Bacon Creek Park in Sioux City. You can get directions to this place from the bottom of this post. These trails are made for just about any type of person.

Parks like this with big concrete trails are places that welcome as many people as they can get. My aunt goes here quite often. I never knew this was the place she was telling me about until I discovered it myself.

I usually like places with fewer people, but I also like to mix things up a little bit too. Sometimes parks like these with lots of people have more wildlife for some reason. I have to say though that I've only seen a few geese so far. But I'm not finished exploring yet.

I only have two pictures of these trails because too many of the same thing can get monotonous. (Wait! I've added one more just for fun.) Big everyday trails like these sometimes tend to look the same in too many pictures.

This park isn't the only place to find this kind of trail around here. Sioux City is full of walking and biking trails. The whole place is made for walking and exploration. I read a few years ago that they might try a trail system like this at Detroit's riverfront, but I'm not sure if they were ever able to do it.

I was a few days later than I wanted to be with my post this time because my schedule changed kind of drastically on me. I'm sleeping at completely different hours. So it took some time to figure out exactly when to do my blogging. I think I'm starting to figure it out now.

And maybe my post of the pictures of this new park make it seem like I'm disappointed in this new park. That's not so at all. These big trails aren't all that's here. The big trails are just the beginning. I'll show you what else I found in a future post. It'll be fun. I'll talk to you later.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Roadside Wildflowers

I decided to take a drive around the countryside yesterday. The beauty of living around here is that you don't have to go to a nature park to find nature. Nature is all around me. So I decided to look around at some of that nature, and I found these wildflowers on the roadsides of the country.

You have to really explore sometimes to find flowers around here, and I got lucky to find all of these on just one trip. I'm not sure why wildflowers are so rare, but it's maybe only because I haven't searched enough until now. I'll have to keep looking to see if that's right.

The first thing I did this time was to find the dirtiest of dirt roads. Sure it's easy to just go up and down the main highways, but it's best to really get out into what some might call the middle of nowhere to find the best of nature.

I found this little bee walking around in this wild rose. It didn't seem to mind that I was there so I took a few pictures of it. Now the bee and the flower are both famous. They'll be seen by people from all over the world. And they thought they were just there for South Dakota people.

The leaves of this wildflower were interesting to me so I decided to show them to you too. The camera seemed to like them too because it focused on them instead of the flower.

If you'd like to find out what kind of flowers all of these are then here's a nice flower identification tool I found just for you:

Here's one of these with all of the leaves showing too. Flowers are good, but the rest of the plant is good too.

These wildflowers are very small. I just zoomed in really close with my camera. I recently found out my phone camera has an 8X zoom on it. That's much better than I thought a phone could do. The camera also focuses on small stuff better than my big camera can.

As you can see, I have lots of pictures today. I didn't want to split these wildflowers up into several different posts. It would seem like the same post over and over with slightly different pictures. So I just decided to give you one big post. You probably like it better this way anyway because there are lots of flower pictures.

Right now I have so many pictures from my everyday adventures that I'm not sure I can keep up with them here. I'm posting as fast as I can, but I'll have to see if I can go even faster. I used to have a post every day, but I'm not sure I'm fast enough to do that anymore. I guess we'll see what happens. I'll talk to you later.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Swarmed By Butterflies

I went to Dorothy Pecaut Nature Center yesterday, which is an indoor and outdoor nature park. This is probably the best nature park around, and the most similar to my parks from back in Michigan. I love this place.

The only problem, which I've told you about many times, is that it is built on the side of the hills. Even with the hard to walk hills, I go here as often as I can. But there are so many nature parks around here that I try to split time between them all. But this time I went here.

So what happened on this trip? The title should give you a good hint. I was swarmed by butterflies! And I don't think my pictures or story can fully demonstrate this event as it happened. I'll try though. I'll try.

When I first got there I saw several butterflies around the concrete steps to get down to the park. I took many pictures because I figured those were the only butterflies. I'm not sharing the pictures because they're kind of unremarkable.

Then I got to the start of the trail. This is a dirt and gravel trail with wooden steps to get down to the lower part of the park. The park goes down a hill then back up even higher than you started. This is the place where the butterflies really were.

There must have been millions of butterflies here on the ground and flying around. These pictures show lots of butterflies, but they are nothing compared to the sheer number I saw when I got there. The butterflies in the pictures are just the ones that didn't leap into the air when I got close.

I had to walk through this butterfly swarm to get to the rest of the park. When I walked into the swarm there were butterflies bouncing off of me and landing all over me. You don't think it would be with butterflies, but it was really kind of disturbing.

I kept trying to gently brush the butterflies off of me, but I wasn't really fast enough. I didn't want to hurt any of them, so I was as careful as I could be. I really felt the need to get away, but I never really did. They were everywhere in the park.

I wanted to take video, but the light was at such an angle that I was having too much trouble seeing my camera screen to hit the right button. I decided that I would do it once I got down into the forest where there was some shade and then come back. But when I came back there seemed to be almost as many people as there were butterflies, so I don't have video for you.

When I finally went back to my truck to cool off and rest my back I took this picture of a butterfly on my window. It's probably my best picture of the day. I had to edit the first picture a bit to fix the lighting so you could see the butterfly better.

So that's my most recent adventure. Right now I have too many pictures and stories from my everyday adventures to share them all. I'm just not fast enough. I'll do my best though. I love when this happens. It means I'm having fun. I'll be back as fast as I can. And I'll talk to you later.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Bacon Creek Park

I promised that I was going to get back out to the nature parks this month, and so here I am. I found a brand new park, at least for me, called Bacon Creek Park. I found this park with an app on my phone called Alltrails. Wonderful app. It's showing me lots of new places to explore.

Bacon Creek Park is located in the eastern part of Sioux City, not far from where my aunt lives. In fact, I showed her a couple of my new pictures and she told me that she goes here all the time. I should have known. She seems to know just about everything about the Sioux City area.

Anyway, when I got here I instantly knew it was a very good place. The first thing I saw was this big lake. It's only my first visit, so I haven't seen a creek yet. The lake kind of dominates the park at first look.

This was my first visit to this place so I didn't do any serious exploring yet. On the first visit to a place I always just do a little bit of scouting to see if I like it. The verdict for this place is that I love it already. The lake is a big plus. It has plenty of trees, which is a requirement for me. And there are lots of trails.

I'll show you some of the trails in the near future. I did try some out. I couldn't go too far because I had my dog with me. Knowing I wouldn't adventure too far, I thought she'd enjoy the look at the new park. She got to poke around a bit and I got to do my scouting. It worked out well.

The only wildlife I saw this first time was a few geese on the other side of the lake. I tried to take a few pictures of them, but all that came out were a few blurry dots. The zoom on my phone is actually better than I thought, but it wasn't good enough for the geese.

I eventually sat on a bench and just watched the lake for awhile. The dog liked this part the most. She didn't even care about the few people that passed by. Watching a body of water is always relaxing. Try it if you haven't already.

I'll be back next time with either more from this place or another park. I have plans for more adventures very soon. These nature parks are always fun and relaxing for me. Let's see what cool stuff I can find in the future. I'll talk to you later.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

A Walk Around Town

My pictures today are dark and funny looking. I did this on purpose. The darkness is because it was very early in the morning. Some of the strangeness though was because I used an odd filter on my phone called Toy.

Years ago there was a blog I used to visit where the person's pictures had an odd effect where everything looked like toylike models, even though the scenes were from real life. I always thought that was really cool. I hoped this filter could do something like this, but I'm not sure it works like that.

Anyway, I thought I'd show you what it looks like in a small country town around here. I'm not sure what impression of the town you might get from these pictures, but let me know what you really think.

You can't see my house in any of these pictures because while I am technically in town, my property is kind of apart from the rest of the town. I'm on kind of a farm at the edge of town. My dad even used to keep cows here.

I still mostly only have the knowledge of a city slicker, so no farm animals for me. But you never know. I could still go the Oliver Wendell Douglas route and go full on Green Acres. After all, it's the place to be.

I'm showing a little of the town because most of the nature around here is on my own property. I promised walks through the town, but I'm not finding a lot of nature in that part of my walks, except for the bugs. Sometimes I have to run home to get away from flying insects.

Many small towns only have dirt roads. That is not the case here. All of the roads here are paved. That means we're so sophisticated. We don't have a store in town, but we have a small gas station where you can buy a few things, but not much. And there is a bar where people come from miles around to visit. Otherwise, there isn't much.

These pictures are maybe the closest I'll get to just sharing a picture of myself. Though I have a cartoon version of me that I've been itching to share somewhere. Actually, there is an obvious picture of me on one of my websites that nobody ever seems to notice. Uh oh, I've said too much, so I'll talk to you later.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Wildflowers And Stuff

I have some slightly strange stuff to tell you today. Then again, all my stories are slightly strange. So I guess I have some normal stuff to tell you. Maybe it'll still be interesting. Let's see.

I'm a day later than I had planned with this post. The reason is only because I was just randomly distracted by stupid stuff. I warned you about that kind of thing a couple of posts ago. Still, a few posts a week is much better than a few posts a month.

As you can see, I have some wildflowers to show you today. This time I do know what they are, but I don't think I'm going to share that information. I'm going to let those of you who are interested find out for yourselves. A quick image search on Bing or Google will reveal all. Just type in a description. It'll be fun.

Sharing your findings in the comments section might be helpful to anyone who can't quite figure it out. Make a game of it. We all love games. and it'll make you very popular. I've actually seen a couple of other posts on other blogs with the lavender colored flowers, complete with the name. Those bloggers visit here, and I know they know the answers.

I'm still taking my morning town walks. That's how I found these flowers. I wish I could say I've been to a nature park already, but I haven't yet. I'll tell you all about why I haven't really been anywhere yet.

I was driving around last week when I found out the brake lights were out on my truck. It was the left one and the middle one. I replaced the one on the right last year. And when I say I replaced it, I mean I had to replace the whole fixture, not just a bulb. The plastic on the connections on these lights seems to melt after a few years, so the whole thing goes bad.
So I have now replaced all five lights, including lenses, on my truck. I had to replace the headlights last month because the lenses had become so cloudy that ther light wouldn't shine through. But now they are all good, and the truck was mostly ready. But I had one more thing to do.

The only problem left was the weather is getting hot and I had no air conditioning in the truck. So I went to work on the truck again. After a little bit of reading, I fixed the air conditioning. It was the first time I ever did that on any vehicle, and I'm kind of proud of myself right now. The air conditioning now works great.

So now I'm finally ready to go to any of the local nature parks. All I have to do is choose a good day to go. I wish I could go every day like I used to, but there is just too much other stuff to do right now. I'll try to go at least a few times a week though.

And now I come to the end of my thoughts. I always say that it's hard for me to talk about flowers, and this was no exception. I kind of weaseled my way out of it in the end, didn't I? But I did have a nice goofy story for you anyway. So that's something. I'll talk to you later.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

A Sad Turkey Story

I have a sad story to tell you about this wild turkey in my pictures. My brother was visiting me from Michigan recently. We were driving around Sioux City looking around when we saw this turkey on the road. It was behaving very strangely, wandering around aimlessly.

We stopped to let the turkey get to where it was going, but it didn't move out of the way like animals usually do. Other cars behind us passed us on the left not knowing there was a turkey there stopping us. We kind of assumed the turkey was just being stubborn. We just weren't sure what was going on with the bird.

After awhile the turkey moved to the side of our vehicle and we went along our way. When we got down the road just a short distance we heard the blare of a car horn behind us. A car behind us wasn't quite so patient with the bird as we were. We both shook our heads and kept moving.

After we went a few places and quite some time had passed, we came back this way where we saw the turkey before. I had forgotten all about the strange bird. But as we passed near the spot from before, my brother told me he saw a dead turkey lying on the side of the road. It had to be the same one.

I don't know what happened to this turkey because it could have been a couple of things. Either it was sick, which is why it was acting so strangely. Or some careless driver either accidentally or on purpose ran it over. Now just thinking about the poor bird makes me sad.

At least the turkey won't just be forgotten. I have these pictures to remember it forever. Something else to always remember is that nature isn't always fun and happy. I'll talk to you later about something happy because we'd all rather be happy now.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Rainbow In Sioux City

I have an extra diversion today from my normal adventures. While I was driving through Sioux City I spotted this rainbow. And of course, anytime I get a picture of a rainbow I have to share it. I wasn't sure I'd have time to get my phone out of my pocket, but it was easier than I thought. So here it is.

I'll probably be back posting my town walks next unless I get to bring you some stuff from one of the nature parks first. I'm already making my big plans for those. For the foreseeable future, I'll have several posts a week. I'll probably do it that way until I get tired or some distraction happens. I hope to stay very busy with posting here for quite a while.

The good thing is when I post a lot I get a little more creative and entertaining with my writing so you won't necessarily be bored with it. The posts will also usually be smaller ones, but they will vary in size a bit too. Let's see what happens. I'll talk to you later.