Hoover Mudflats Boardwalk is part of the Hoover Nature Preserve operated by the Columbus Parks and Recreation Department. It is one of the best birding sites in central Ohio. In the fall the city lowers the water level in Hoover Reservoir, so it’s more hospitable to migrating shore birds. The area around the boardwalk is also used for fishing and launching kayaks, and I’ve seen crew teams training here. Beyond that, the site is just lovely.
A turtle trailing a skirt of algae
When I caught sight of this turtle trailing a skirt of algae, I was immediately reminded of the similar turtles that are often depicted in Asian art.
This is follow-up to my earlier post, I sold a photo!. I knew that one of my photos was going to be used as a background image on an interpretive sign. But I just learned from my contact person with Bluestone + Associates that the sign was installed this month at Klehm Arboretum and Botanic Garden.
Posted in Nature
It had been a good hike so far. During the past several miles, we had enjoyed seeing rocky outcroppings, mature trees, and carpets of ferns. As we climbed a steep hill toward the top of the ridgeline, the trail widened and grew brighter. Distant buzzards soared effortlessly in the bright, blue sky. We found ourselves standing on a rocky cliff. A few hundred feet below, forest stretched out to the horizon. It sounds a bit like the Hocking Hills, doesn’t it? But it wasn’t. It was Christmas Rocks.
View from Jacobs Ladder Trail
The Earl H Barnhart “Buzzards Roost” Nature Preserve is a large (1330 acres) preserve run by Ross County Park district. We visited in the early afternoon on a hot sunny day in late May. The preserve is on a plateau that ends in a cliff overlooking the Paint Creek valley.
View of Paint Creek Valley from Buzzards Roost
Looking from one esker (hill) to another
An esker is a special sort of hill. Eskers develop underneath a glacier, so in Ohio they formed during the last ice age. The sediment that eventually creates an esker starts its life as the sand, gravel and rock deposited on the bottom of a riverbed. However the unusual thing about the associated river is that it flows under great pressure beneath a massive glacier. Instead of having normal riverbanks made of earth, this kind of river flows through a crevasse or icy tunnel at the base of a glacier. Over hundreds, even thousands of years, huge piles of sediment accumulate at the bottom of this subglacial river. When the glacier finally melts, the old riverbed remains as a long mound that rises above the surrounding landscape. To the causal viewer, they look like long, winding hills.
Bee in Water Lily
We stopped by Wahkeena Nature Preserve this past weekend; unlike our previous trip, we didn’t hike the trails there. Instead we focused on the marsh, pond, and streams. Water lilies were blooming in both the pond and marsh, and as you can see above, bees were busy pollinating them.
Entrance to Mound City
What’s known as the “Mound City Group” is part of the Hopewell Culture National Historical Park in Ross County, Ohio. This land was used for funeral rituals by a Native American civilization that flourished between 200 B.C. and 500 A.D. Mound City is approximately 13 acres in size. A low earthen wall about 3 to 4 feet high (1 to 1.3 meters) lies around the perimeter; it’s shape is that of a square with rounded corners. Perhaps the builders of the Mound City thought of the wall as a “sacred enclosure” separating the land of the departed from the land of the living.
The “Hopewell Culture” refers to a Native American civilization that was centered in Ohio. It flourished here between 200 B.C. and 500 A.D. They are renowned for having built elaborate, huge, earthen structures. However when these mounds were excavated, many artifacts of great artistry were discovered. I would like to share photos of a few of these artifacts, or in some case, replicas of these artifacts. All of them were uncovered at “Mound City” which is where the Hopewell Culture National Historical Park is today. They were on display in the museum portion of the park’s visitor’s center.
A copper representation of a bird of prey
View from the Fire tower at Scioto Trail State Park.
Scioto Trail State Park is located in the forested hills of Ross County in southern Ohio. Most of the trails are near the Caldwell Lake. The day we were there, there was a fishing tournament in progress at the lake.