10 June 2012. A Really Fine Day with Prairie Clover and Prairie Dock

Today’s was an unusually quiet morning, even for a Sunday.  Saw no cars nor any other sign of human movement out on the streets.   Did, however, see a little raccoon head appear (and then disappear) from a storm drain along the bike lane.  The air was cool enough for a sweater to be comfortable but was perceptibly starting to warm. The sky was clear, with only a hint of haze around the horizon, where there was a blush of purplish pink.  The moon was to the east of the center of the sky (and also still in the southern part) and about half.

Since I’ll be going on vacation in a couple of days, wanted to be sure to get a good Meadowbrook  fix. Got some shots from my favorite sunrise-viewing places. Saw a large, very bright disc between trees.  It was quiet at the park, also; even the several intrepid  visitors I often see were not there. There was such a beautiful, embracing silence. Remembered to bring my sound recorder and caught some bird sounds.

Got a shot of a milkweed beetle on a common milkweed plant.

Found the prairie clover I’d missed two times before, two different clumps of them!  Had a photo-feast w/ them. Saw my first blooming prairie dock (Sylphium terebinthinaceum)of the year.  More compass plants were blooming and still more were putting up their tall sturdy stalks. The average indigo (Baptisia) height seemed to be on the increase. Some already had dark seed pods.  The rattlesnake master were getting taller also.

The air was cooler, as it so often seems to be, near the observation platform, but not uncomfortably so.

Noticed how a lot of the grasses were now long enough to curve back down toward the ground. It was hard to catch their graceful green-on-green curves with the camera. But, hooray! Today I was able to let it go and just enjoy it.

Saw at least one deer but off in the middle if the “big loop.”  Almost (did not, quite) ran over a little rabbit before crossing the little bridge in the middle of the south path.

Stopped at the playground bridge but didn’t see beavers or ducks. Saw a pair of someone’s carefully removed wet shoes and socks. Did they intend to come back for them?  Took a picture of beaver snacks: freshly felled logs with bark chewed clean off.  When I later looked at the photo noticed a surprise frog.

Riding home–did eventually see other people in the park but the streets were still unusually quiet–really really enjoyed just pedaling on my own power, with my own even breath, with trees and flowers along the way, over the smooth street with no big holes in it, no dogs running after me, no storms or bombs falling from the sky, for that matter. What could be better?


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