Along Route 78 between Kewanee and Anawan in Henry County is a state park known mostly to locals but offering beautiful sites and experiences to all who would explore it.
One important lesson that the Master Naturalist training has taught me is to be observant of the natural world around me. The most amazing things can be revealed by watching and listening carefully to the land.
I had always noticed a tall stand of grass in the middle of a neighbor's field since the time I first moved to the area. I watched the color of this grass change with the seasons so I knew it was not just an ordinary lawn gone weedy. Later I learned it was a small graveyard called Bruner Cemetery.
I have always loved a treasure hunt. Finding something new or never seen before is always a thrill.
Searching for wildflowers that I have not seen before or perhaps that are just beginning to make an appearance is one of the greatest pleasures that I have experienced on my daily walks around my home.
It is late fall and a frosty morning as I take my first walk of the day. The heavy frost reveals the drama of the night before. Many creatures ventured out in the brilliant light of the "super moon". Their tracks crisscross the path and disappear in the tall grass. I come across a fresh kill. Not much left of the critter but by the looks of the fuzzy little tail I can tell it was one of the cottontails. No obvious tracks near it but on the footbridge over the creek are small canine tracks. Could have been a coyote.