My wife and I made our first visit to Hoffman Hills Recreation Area since our return from Iceland. There were a few birds around. It looks like Eastern Bluebirds have taken up residence in several houses.
There was a little activity in the ponds. We found this Muskrat in the first pond. He didn’t pay much attention to us as we walked around the pond. The second pond was completely covered in scum and there was no evidence of any birds or animals using it.
There were a few flowers around. The Spiderwort is the most common.
The Prairie Smoke is just about gone.
Orange Hawkweed is common on the trails.
Dragon Flies are out and about.
On our first walk along the Red Cedar Trail since our return from Iceland we found a number of flowers blooming.
The Spiderwort is in full Bloom.
Orange Hawkweed is Blooming.
The Blue-flag Iris is just about done.
This unknown (at least to me) is in full bloom in the Prairie area.
After Breakfast we headed back out to the Badlands to hike some of the trails.
It’s a little scary when the first thing you see on the trail is a sign warning you about Rattlesnakes.
On the trail you walk through some grasslands. The spring flowers were out it large numbers. I’ve hike these trails many times and this was the most flowers I’ve ever seen.
Part of the trails are through dirt and rocks. We had asked the ranger on the way in if there had been any rain. Fortunately the trails were mostly dry. If they had been wet we wouldn’t have made the trip. The dirt in the Badlands is commonly called gumbo. It sticks to everything and is very difficult to get off of your shoes.
This shot is a closeup of the above formation.
We didn’t see all that many other hikers. The day before we had see lots of old people (people our age) at the rest stops but on the trail we didn’t see anyone over 30. Most of the hikers were young people including a large class that we met on the eastern end of the trail.
More photos from the Badlands National Park can be found on my website.
My wife and I made a visit to Hoffman Hills Recreation Area today to see what is blooming and to check out the wildlife. There are a lot of flowers blooming in the Prairie area.
Wild Lupine is just finishing up blooming.
Prairie Smoke is in full bloom.
Dew Covered Prairie Smoke
Orange Hawkweed is blooming around the ponds.
Blue flag Iris is blooming in the wet areas.
Blue Flag Iris
Spiderwort are just starting to bloom.
Wildlife watching has been very disappointing this year. Normally we would be watching Canada Geese with their young but this year, for the first time, in many years they did not nest. Two adults build a nest but after a week they were gone. There have been no Muskrats or Beaver sightings this year. There were only a few birds around.
One of the late spring early summer flowers that I like to photograph are the Spiderwort. They can be found at most of the locations where I photograph in the summer months. Here are some photos from around the area. The come in a variety of shades of blue. I’ve also found a very few white Spiderwort flowers.
I’ve been out to Hoffman Hills several times the past week photographing flowers. There are a wide variety of late spring flowers blooming in the prairie and wetlands areas west of the access road with more flowers on the way. There are a couple that I haven’t been able to identify so if you know what they are let me know.
Blue Flag Iris