Monday, April 23, 2018

April 20 2018 Hepatica Hill in Bloom!

April 20 2018 Happy Boots and Hepatica Hill
This was the first warm day this spring and still there was snow on the ground in places.  The temperature was in the low 40's when we started out but later in the day we saw 55 degrees and sunshine.
First stop Happy Boots, a swampy woods in Allegan County, filled with wildflowers.

    Skunk Cabbage
     Marsh Marigold

     Trout Lily in bud
    Round Lobed Hepatica
 A jumble of Round Lobed Hepatica just starting to bloom

    Spring Beauty

We saw this red mite, I saw a Garter Snake, a unidentified butterfly, a few other bugs, and Water Striders.
Water Strider with shadow, Sand Creek Allegan County.

      Happy Boots

After two hours enjoying Happy Boots we were off to Hepatica Hill.  Hepatica Hill is a location that was shared, several years ago, from Mark Cassino (CalArti: A Photographer's Journal)

Here it is Hepatica Hill!  I know it doesn't look like much, until you look closely.
Then you start to see them everywhere!
 Hepatica!  Each one is special, a difference in color from deep purple, blue, pink, even white, some with just a few petals and some with many petals. 
They look very delicate, perched on such a rough and scoured hillside.  So colorful among the dry brown leaves.


Well that was probably enough for one day, but after spending almost two more hours at Hepatica Hill, we stopped in at Silver Creek County Park to check on the Trailing Arbutus.  But we found none blooming.

We also drove down 133rd Avenue, but found little blooming.  Some Spring Beauty, Hepatica, a Dandelion, and Trout Lily in bud.

It was a great day to be outside, and fun to see my favorite spring wildflower.  Hepatica

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

March 2018 in Michigan

This year March was cold and mostly dry, still we were able to get out for many walks.

March 2nd, it was Hofma Preserve in Grand Haven Township, with my daughter Betsy.

March 3rd, Marie and I went to Hemlock Crossing Nature Center for a hike led by Kristen Hintz, on Tree ID in Winter.  It was a great walk, Kristen is very interesting and knows so much about nature.  It was a much larger group than expected with a wide age group, but Kristen took it in stride!  She involved everyone from young to old in our exploration of trees.  Unfortunately, I managed to lose my pictures from that day. 

March 4th Mike and I went north to the Manistee River trail, starting at Red Bridge.  We walked north for one and a half hours then back the way we came.  The trail was icy, so it was slow going.  But a beautiful day to hike our favorite trail.

March 10th and 11th we were at Connor Bayou, an Ottawa County park along the Grand River in Robinson Township. 
         Connor Bayou

The difference of 11 days along the Grand River.

We also drove through Riverside Park a few miles east of Connor Bayou. 

Boat Launch at Riverside Park on February 27 2018  Red Circle marks the sign at the launch

Below is the same boat launch on March 10 2018

Debris in the trees from the high water

March 12, Mike and I went for a quick walk at Hofma Preserve.  It was a cold and windy day but we got out there.

March 14, Marie and I visited Hiawatha Forest, Ottawa County property. We have been here before, a long time ago.  And yes there was snow on the ground.

March 15, another quick loop through the woods at Connor Bayou.

March 17, another favorite place Crockery Creek more Ottawa County Property.

March 18 Connor Bayou again.

                              Still some snow!

March 20 2018 Hager Park and Grand River Park with Marie.
Spring begins and we saw Chickweed blooming at Hager!

Not very impressive but still, it is blooming.
More from Hager Park...
 United States terrain map

 Michigan on the terrain map

Then to Grand River Park

March 23 Crockery Creek with Mike


March 24 Riverside Park, with Mike

And March 25 Connor Bayou, again with Mike

March 26  Marie and I went to Van Zoeren Woods in Zeeland Township and Hudsonville Nature Center in the city of Hudsonville. 
 Wild Leek

And Hudsonville Nature Center...

We did see more Wild Leek coming up, and some buds on Marsh Marigolds.

March 30 One more walk at Connor Bayou in the evening with Mike.
 Grand River at Connor Bayou Ottawa County Park

So that was my March 2018, cool and mostly dry.  Spring is being a bit slow but we will see in April how things can really slow down!