It was 60 degrees F (at most) and mostly clear at 6:50 this morning as I, with as little deliberation and fuss as possible, headed south on Race Street toward Meadowbrook Park and then perhaps out west on Windsor Road.
Stopped to look for mushrooms under the spruce trees. There were no Amanitas but did notice a couple of dough-like masses,
which I assumed were fungi and not actual masses of dough, although one can never, without further exploration, be sure.
Sped (but not completely without applying the brakes) towards and across the rabbit statue bridge. Then stopped and turned back to find the Great Blue Lobelia I’d seen on a previous visit, but first was distracted by thistle and wingstem.
Soon found the Lobelia
and then a little to the right saw a cold dragonfly perched on a boneset plant.
(Look slightly to the left of the very center of the photo.) But it zoomed away when I tried to get a closer shot.
Going back to the bridge I noticed colorful trash in the open container,
including a funny, ironic label, the literal reading of which actually came close to describing the mood of the morning.
Proceeded eastward on the path and stopped for a nice counterpoint of boneset and late compass plant.
Also stopped for the tall Coreopsis against the blue sky.
Farther along the path saw a deer crossing to the other side,
And another, and another (four in all!), off to the buck’s club, or wherever.
Near the Freyfogle observation deck noticed that many compass plants were done blooming,
but even the last flowers sent out their yellow exuberance.
The cream gentians were abundant!
Apparently, bees had been at work getting into the flowers.
Then turned west along Windsor Road on the south edge of the park. Close to the path were thistles framed by tall Coreopsis.
At Race Street crossed to the westbound bike lane and headed west on Windsor just to ride!
Saw a harvested field and was amazed by how early the corn had been harvested, which was good news for these geese,
availing themselves of the bounty.
Along Windsor Road in Champaign there were crab apples laden with and dropping fruit.
Rode on Windsor as far as 700 E
and turned back, stopping to look down into the current of Copper Slough.
The corn along Windsor Road had golden ears on green stalks and surrounded by green leaves –a picture of health and vigor.
My bike for scale shows how crazy-talk it was.
Some of the corn stalks were decorated with blue morning glories.
Not sure whether the morning glories were harmful to the corn, but visually they were lovely.
Headed east and and then a little north, across the U of I campus just in time for move-in at the dorms.
Cars were lined up on the sidewalk (!?!), but the mood seemed calm, as if everyone expected it to go just like this.
Was deeply satisfied to have inserted a decent ride into the busy week and trekked out in the waning summer!