After our big trip this summer, we really had to spend some time unpacking and settling into our new location. That meant my weekend trips to somewhere new were on hold for a bit. But that hasn’t stopped me from venturing close to home and seeing what I might find!
We have this very small park about a mile from our house. I drive by it twice a day at a minimum, to and from work. I have always noticed the signs for a trail, and each time think, “We really need to explore that some day.” Well, someday was just recently, and I am glad I did!
The first visit I took the 4-legged companion with me. She’s always up for exploring, loves to walk, and is really good on her leash. We set off down the trail, and I was immediately in love with this place. You wind down a ways from the parking lot, then you come upon this incredible wooden boardwalk that takes you across the creek.
From the other side, the boardwalk ends, but the path continues to parallel the creek. The path is almost completely shaded, which was a plus because it was late afternoon both times I’ve visited. Every so often the tree canopy parts and you get a bit of sun, but you really don’t need to bring sunglasses on this walk. There were platforms where you could stop and watch the creek lazily roll by, a covered picnic table, and lots of nature to admire. I saw so many butterflies my first visit. Not a lot of wildlife on the ground (which was ok with me – I’m not really interested in meeting a local snake on my walk!) I can imagine during the mornings and at dusk in the fall and spring you might be lucky enough to spot a deer, however.
I went as far as I could with my 4-legged friend, and only had to carry her a little bit of the way home. It was about a 3 mile round-trip walk, so I cannot complain. She was a trooper, for sure! My second favorite sighting on the first visit was the bat houses. There are several built underneath the power lines. That explains why we can sit outside and not get bit all over. I was so happy to see the use of natural mosquito control over spraying. I have always wanted to put a bat house in my backyard. At least I know they are nearby!
A few days later I was lucky enough to take my other half out to show him my “discovery.” We walked quite a bit further and found even more “treasures.”
I think this tree trunk is the perfect hiding spot for fairies!
About a quarter mile further from where I turned around on my first trek, we came across these two buildings, or what used to be buildings. We’re not sure what they used to be. I think possibly a mill of some sort as it is right next to the creek? And there is a smaller foundation just up the hill from it which may have been the office? I love that the foundations and remaining structures have been reinforced with steel framing. This will ensure it doesn’t topple and injure someone, but also preserves a piece of local history.
Next time I go for a walk here I am going to check the map on the “visitor center” and see if it gives any information on these buildings. (It’s not manned, and is essentially the restrooms, but visitor center sounds so much better!)
We haven’t yet gone the full length of this trail, but we will keep at it until we do. It’s supposed to connect with the Silver Comet Trail, which is another local attraction I’m itching to explore. That will likely require a bicycle tune-up (or replacement) to do it justice. And fall is perfect for bike rides!