One of the most enjoyable activities in Springfield is bicycling or walking the Ozark Greenway Trails. Over the 15 years I've lived in Springfield I've enjoyed watching the trail system grow and grow. And while I try to get out and ride several trail systems on a regular basis, this past year it really hasn't happened.
So last week I took a long trip on the South Creek trail, all the way to the finish. My first in a very long time. I must say I am so pleased with "the doings" along the way!
First, major work is happening on South Creek just west of Campbell Avenue. The concrete channel is being dug up to be replaced by a more natural creekbed which is much better for the creek and the wildlife and plants there. At the moment it's not a pretty sight, but the hope is the work will be done in November.
In the meantime!! The "Prairie in Progress" that's been planted several years ago is looking great, especially with this new Bat House! This little patch of prairie is always so alive with bugs and birds - and bats, I guess!
There is this cool bicycle station near Jefferson and Sunset! What a surprise to find this! Everything you need to air up your tires and do minor repair. Very new (to me) and very happy to see this!
The new signs look great! The new sign logo is awesome!
A brief side trip (not really far off the path) found some cool things at the Botanical Center. I will be honest, I really liked it so much more back in the day, when I first moved here and rode my bike to Nathanial Greene Park. It was mostly trees and overgrown shrubby areas. Not really much to "look at", but to me a perfect getaway from the city blah scenery. Not it looks just like the city blah scenerty. Bowling green lawns with so few shrubs I feel the need to hug each one. Raised beds filled with that manicured, sterile plant look I so dislike. Really just not to my liking. Until I went to the Dr. Bill Roston Native Butterly House, Adjacent to the Butterfly House was this cute new little bed - the Native Caterpillar Cafe! Planted in there are flowers familiar to most of us, with information about the critters each plant hosts. Very cool stuff, and something anyone can do at their own home or school or church!
Kickapoo Edge Prairie is really looking wonderful! The Purple Poppy Mallow and Purple Passion Flower Vine were in full bloom, attracting the bees. The Audubon Bubbler Trail (not sure if that is the name) is also awesome, if mysterious, carved out of the woods like that.
West of the park the trail is looking beautiful as ever. My camera is not up to the job, so no photos, but I truly love riding it to the end. It is so peaceful in the little woods between the golf course and Carver Middle School. The creek is beautiful. The one big downside, for me, are the acres and acres of bowling green lawn surrounding Carver Middle School. My brain gets to scheming about how to turn that into vital habitat for our wildlife, and save Springfield Public
Schools hundreds of thousands of dollars in mowing time.
If you have a chance, head on down to the South Creek trail and enjoy some quality time surrounded by nature in the heart of the city! Salud!