Meanwhile- a definite sign of spring. Skunk Cabbage.
I won't give you the full blow-by-blow, but a sampling. The trail near the campground is partly in decent shape. This bit of infrastructure was built by the city maybe 15 years ago. It's holding up OK, but the loop on the far side of this bridge can barely be found any more.
Once you get through that section, the trail goes along the edge of the Old Engine Club grounds. That is kept mowed, so that part of the trail is fine, although there is only one remaining marker post so that people would have a clue where to go.
The next section is where it gets really dicey. Yes, this is the trail. This would need a lot of solid work to clean up, but it could be done.
Because the water was so low, I was able to get beyond the missing bridge, and come to the edge of the Pere Marquette River. Not much green yet, but always peaceful in this stretch.
I almost always find some nice reflection picture along here. Today, it was a mossy log
There is a large bottomland hardwood swamp between the old water treatment pond locations and the river. I've never seen it this dry. This is usually covered with water. I hiked all through it today in places you can't usually access without wading in muck.
Long story shortish... I got back to the edge of one of the old treatment ponds (now dry) and then cut across to the Engine Club area. Managed to dunk my feet on that part of the adventure, but not my butt, so it was fine. Then I went to the other end and hiked around the other direction, skipping that really messed up area I worked my way through earlier. The thing is, there is another place that is almost always covered with water, preventing hikers from closing the loop. It was completely dry today. This section of the trail is badly obscured with Japanese Barberry. Invasive, thorny, miserable. Needs to be removed.
On my trip around in this direction, there were some observers in addition to me. The earth "wall" behind her is the berm for one of the treatment ponds.
Anyway, it was a fun adventure- maybe 2.5 miles. The original loop was 1.5. I did that and then an abbreviated second time around in the other direction.
I keep forgetting to tell you the signs of spring that I didn't get pictures of: peepers, chorus frogs, a muskrat, the pheobe came to my deck today, sandhill cranes, turkey vultures... they are all showing up!
In other news: I attended a couple of virtual Easter services, listened to my Easter music playlist, and did a bunch of editing.
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