Phil Parker (tigertoy) wrote,
Phil Parker

I love Homer Lake

Homer Lake is the colloquial name for the Salt Fork River Forest Preserve, a Champaign County park that's fairly close to where I live. A few decades ago, there was a movement in the state government to have a state park in every county, and Homer Lake was the one for Champaign County. Then the state government decided that it was silly to have tiny parks like this (it's only two or three acres, I think) and turned it over to the county. I've been in the habit of going there when I want to spend some time in as natural an area as I can be in without a major trip.

As small as the park is, it manages to provide a lot of pleasant opportunities to walk around. There's only a fairly small amount of actual mature forest, but the trails loop through it to use it to best advantage, and there's a lot of land that was clear a few decades ago that is being allowed to turn into forest again, which I find quite pleasant, if not as awesome as mature forest.

Today, when I got out of my car I was greeted by a northern (formerly known as Baltimore) oriole. I saw lots of birds, and even identified a few, including lots of palm warblers, a yellowthroat, chipping, white-crowned, and white-throated sparrows, goldfinches, a red-tailed hawk, and a pair of eastern kingbirds. A high point of the my 4+ hours was watching several pairs of geese, each of which had a bunch of very cute fuzzy goslings. As I got back to my car and got ready to leave, there were two orioles in the tree by my car.

Oh, and I took 147 pictures, ~360MB, which are oozing onto my hard drive from the flash card while I write this. If I had my new computer, *grumble*, I would have a much more pleasant task ahead to try to make some quick notes about what the pictures are while it's still fresh in my mind.
Tags: camera, life, tech
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