On June 8th, we took some pictures around Wild River State Park and St. Croix State Park, the largest State Park in Minnesota at 33,895 acres. They weren’t terribly far apart but had very different landscapes. These are also the first pictures I have posted up from my new camera, a Canon Rebel T3i DSLR that my parents found on sale for a great deal. It really expands the kinds of pictures I can take and is fun to use.
Looking back along the road leading to Wild River State Park. There are some horses in the field on the left.
We have entered Wild River State Park now. Wild River actually has 35 miles of trails, and runs along 18 miles of the St. Croix River. It is a large place as well, and we were only there for a bit.
Behind the visitors center was an observation deck that gave a nice view of the river valley. This was just a short walk to see.
Looking into the shady woods beyond the visitors center.
This ornate flower, sometimes erroneously called a honeysuckle, is actually a Columbine.
Columbine from below.
This looks like the Chicken of the Woods fungus. If it is, that would actually be edible, and it is commonly foraged. Be sure to identify it beyond a shadow of a doubt before eating something that looks like this though. They were very vibrant.
We didn’t actually go down this trail, my mom only went that far because the mosquitoes were getting heavy. I liked the scene in this one a lot though.
We actually saw a lot of small bugs and critters on the trail we did walk. There was a variety of beetles, inchworms, caterpillars, and this snail.
We pretty rarely see snails this large, they are normally just tiny snails, much smaller than a fingernail, under logs.
On the way out of Wild River, a boat launch on the St. Croix River.
The sky was very blue on our way out, and I played with the camera settings to get a picture that most resembled what we were seeing.
Hardly have any pictures from St. Croix State Park, we were just driving the whole time. The area we were in was pretty open and savanna-like.
In 2011, there was a severe windstorm that blew down many trees. In order to prevent all the wood laying around from burning in a massive forest fire, they had to go in, log it, and clean it out, followed by lighting a controlled fire to burn off any extra fuel.
St. Croix State Park seemed to have a lot of wildlife, (we saw two deer and a beaver), but we noticed that there were no waterbirds, such as Herons or Cranes. Normally you would see them in open marshy land like this, but maybe they just weren’t around where we were. We did not explore either of these areas extensively, partially due to size and time constraints and partially due to mosquitoes. Thanks for reading!