- Yellowstone In Winter
- Animals/Birds of the Badlands, Yellowstone and Grand Tetons National Parks 2016
- National Parks Landscapes 2016
- Animals of Yellowstone/Tetons/Badlands 2014
- Yellowstone/Tetons/Badlands Landscapes 2014
- Animals of Yellowstone/Tetons/Badlands 2012
- Yellowstone/Tetons/Badlands Landscapes 2012
- Animals of Yellowstone 2011
- Yellowstone/Tetons Landscapes 2011
- Yellowstone Textures
- Custer State Park, SD
- Great Smoky Mountains NP
- Rocky Mountain National Park
- Utah National Parks
- About Me
Apparently lots of people are feeding the Trumpeter Swans, because two of them swam across the lake to greet us as we approached the shore, at Moorehead Pioneer Park, Ida Grove, IA. When it was apparent that we had no plans to feed the birds they turned their back on us and swam away.
The Milky Way, billions of stars and our little camper at the Lewis and Clark State Park campground south of Sioux City, IA. We were there mid-week on a beautiful campsite next to the lake. We only had one close neighbor but we all kept our distance. We have visited 20 Iowa state parks this summer from the Mississippi River to the Missouri River. There has been some time for photography and some time to just sit an enjoy the natural world around us while keeping our distance from others (and a bit of scenic driving too). Many more Iowa state parks to go but we’re back home for awhile.
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I took the kayak out to Beeds Lake State Park tonight to photograph what I believe is a non-breeding Common Loon that has been hanging around for at least a week or more [Edit: apparently it has been there most of the summer] . It was reported elsewhere that it was a rare Yellow-billed Loon, but I am quite certain that is not correct. As I quietly drifted by, with a little help from a light breeze, the Loon did not seem at all concerned with my presence. (Click to see larger).
Moon rise over the Mississippi River at the confluence of the Wisconsin River at Pikes Peak State Park, IA. The bright beams of light are from a towboat pushing multiple barges heading up the river in the dark with two massive spotlights pointing up the river. 8/4/2020
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Bridal Veil Falls at Pikes Peak State Park, IA, on our anniversary (a few days ago). It is not much more than a trickle at this time of year. I guess we'll have to go back after heavy rains or spring snow melt. It's a nice walk, down about 250 stairs to get there (and then back up again).
A female American Redstart flitting around in the bushes by the river overlook in the early morning.
A view that most people don't see, looking across the Shell Rock River at the covered bridge at Wilkenson Pioneer Park in Rock Falls, IA. The road to the bridge goes along the side of the river. The bridge is over a small stream that flows in to the river.
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Reflections in the pond in the early morning sun. Wilkenson Pioneer Park, Rock Falls, IA.
I think Swamp Milkweed plants are much more attractive than common milkweed. I like the delicate pink flowers and smaller leaves. They are an important host plant for Monarch Butterflies. The females are very selective and only lay their eggs on milkweed plants.
A water lily among the lily pads, just opening in the morning sun. They close up tight at night and gradually open in the morning as the sun warms them.
A few more photos below. Click to see larger.