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MN trip 3: Black River State Forest - Phil's Rambling Rants
July 4th, 2006
07:10 pm

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MN trip 3: Black River State Forest
Friday morning, I stopped at a large green area on the highway map called Black River State Forest.  I was rather irked to discover that Wisconsin state parks demand $10 a day from visitors; to add insult to injury, they charge more for out of state cars than in-state (Hello?  Aren't you supposed to be encouraging tourists to visit, not making them unwelcome?)  And to add additional insult to injury, you have to pay even when there isn't a person there to take your money.  I very nearly left in disgust, but I realized that my planned route would drop me pretty much into Minneapolis, and I'd get there a lot earlier than I meant to if I didn't spend some time somewhere.  So I went ahead and paid.

With more research, I might have found a more exciting place to stop, but this was a somewhat interesting area.  It was clear-cut and farmed until the Depression, and then the forest was allowed to return.  The "State Forest" designation means that they still do logging, but hopefully more responsibly than in past years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                       
Orange Flowers and Butterfly
                I started seeing these orange flowers north of Tomah.  When I got to Minnesota, they were everywhere.  This one had a little orange butterfly, so I took pictures.
Orange Flowers and Butterfly
Orange Flowers and Butterfly
                closeup
Orange Flowers and Butterfly
Busy Yarrow
                This flower had a wasp and a bee on it.
Busy Yarrow
Warbler
                Anyone want to play Name that Birdie?
Warbler
Sandhill Cranes
                The area where I first parked was beside a pond called a "flowage".  Across the pond when I came back from my walk there was a pare of cranes.
Sandhill Cranes
White Stripe Butterfly (top view)
                Another thing I started seeing all over when I went north was these butterflies.  They look a lot like my local Red-Spotted Purple, but with a white stripe on both sides of the wings.
White Stripe Butterfly (top view)
White Stripe Butterfly (bottom view)
                So, does anyone have a name for this pretty butterfly?
White Stripe Butterfly (bottom view)
 

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From:beige_alert
Date:July 5th, 2006 01:11 am (UTC)
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You get in free if you arrive under human power! I just went to Harrington Beach today by bicycle.

It's currently $25/year for residents for the annual sticker ($35 non-resident), which is pretty minimal if you live here and make frequent use of the parks. Trail passes are $15/year (resident or not), and I think all the ski trails now require them, plus a few of the bike trails. It would be nice if the park entrances were staffed a bit more. Though if you actually live here, you get this taken care of sometime in January and that's it for the year.

Given the continual budget crunch, the fees certainly aren't going away. The Milwaukee County park system is a shambles these days....
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From:tigertoy
Date:July 5th, 2006 01:33 am (UTC)
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The higher fee I faced as a non-resident is what really got me honked off. I was prepared for the $7 fee (that was mentioned, I think on the map), but not for the $3 surcharge for being a visitor to the state. $7 for a day seems like a lot. $25 for a year is not so bad, if you're in a position to visit parks many time through the year. But I'm struck by the fact that Illinois, which has thoroughly fucked up finances of its own, doesn't charge to visit state parks. Of course, Illinois' parks aren't quite as spiffy.
From:birder2
Date:July 5th, 2006 04:13 am (UTC)

identities

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Your orange flower is an orange hawkweed. The warbler is a pine warbler. The butterfly with the white striped wing is a white admiral. The orange& black butterflies are why I don't get into butterfly ID.
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