Being in nature truly replenishes my soul. Since our move away from Bloomington, we haven’t had as many opportunities to get out into the country, the wilderness, nature. This area of Northern Indiana is a bit more densely populated and urban than Monroe County and Southern Indiana. The great thing about Bloomington was all the rolling hills and how beautiful Brown County was only a few minutes away. I realized I was really starting to miss that up here. So we on Thursday we took advantage of a day off and discovered our nearest state park, Potato Creek.
I was so happy to discover that this park is only about 30 minutes away from us! This park had pretty much everything you could want in a park. Hiking trails, bike trails, horse trails, bikes to rent, boats to rent, a sandy beach, cabins and tent areas. It was perfect. There was even a really cool little Nature Center. We went on a really fun 2 mile hike and then enjoyed a picnic together. The great thing was how empty the park was in the middle of the week, right before the Labor Day weekend rush.
My favorite part of the day was going into the Nature Center and looking out the bird watching windows. They had a ton of birdfeeders set out in front of this window and it was a great place for viewing birds! We saw at least a dozen different bird species out there. And since I was having a great time I picked up a Birds of Indiana Checklist and decided to start keeping track of the birds I saw! Of course my next stop was to pick up a Bird Field Guide at the library. Next I’m hoping to get a bird feeder for our little patio and eventually maybe a pair of nice birding binoculars. I love birds so much! Since moving to Indiana I have been struck by the beauty of the birds in this part of the country. I think Cardinals, the Indiana state bird, will always be my favorite. Another favorite is the Great Blue Heron. It reminds me of those special mornings we would see a heron fishing in the pond in our backyard growing up.
So far I have counted 18 bird species on my checklist. That is a very small number of the 990 North American bird species in my guide book, so I have a lot of birds yet to discover!! My new goal is to reach 100 species by next Fall!