Another Hike in the City Creek Area

A while back Sue and I went to an Earth Day festival at a local park. I met a guy there who told me about a really nice hike further up the City Creek drainage – a trail called “The Grove”. So today I decided to check it out.

I took a bunch of photos to give you an idea of what it was like

The area is mountainous and in the lower areas it’s grassy with scattered juniper trees:

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The area is criss-crossed with single track trails like this. Here we’re looking down City Creek towards the Portneuf Valley.DSCN0949

Here’s another view back down the road toward the valley:
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The junipers of course are evergreen, but spring is just starting to show here in the higher altitudes, with a few wildflowers and deciduous trees just starting to show buds and leaves. Here’s some wildflowers I found:
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Here’s looking up the canyon – getting green, but still not a lot of leaves.
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I was paid a visit from this butterfly, who was kind enough to stay still long enough for me to get a picutre:
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I was told that “The Grove” from which the trail takes its name, is an aspen grove, I didn’t see many aspen, but I saw quite a few maples, as well as a variety of other trees.
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Here’s a look back down the valley towards home:
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This was as far as I got before I had to turn around and go home. However, with all the miles of trails up here, I’m sure I’ll be back!
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On the way back, I took this panorama of the road home.
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So that’s it – I had a great time and hope you enjoy this post!

News from Death Valley

Today was such a beautiful day that Sue and I decided to take a walk. One of the things I really like about Pocatello is the easy access to hiking trails. I think I’ve already mentioned the Portneuf Greenway, which is a system of urban parks and trails being developed next to the Portneuf River where it winds its way through the city.

There is also a system of trails the city is developing on Pocatello City and BLM Property in the foothills immediately southwest of the city – The City Creek Trail System.

On the recommendation of a friend, we set out for a trail called “Death Valley”.
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It’s really quite pretty. I can’t figure out why it’s called “Death Valley”.

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After hiking a half mile or so, we found a side trail that took us up out of the ravine onto the ridge above. Here’s a shot from there. You can see how close the city is. (That’s Idaho State University in the distance).

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Looking in the direction opposite the city, here’s a view of the mountains southwest of town:

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Once we got back to the car, Sue and I decided to explore a little of the Greenway. Here’s a little park on the Greenway, right on City Creek.

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Here’s the Portneuf River, near where City Creek flows into it:

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This section of the Greenway features some of the interesting Geology of the region. Once, until about 15,000 years ago, most of Utah was covered by Lake Bonneville. Then about 15,000 years ago, the “lake” (actually an inland sea), breached a natural dam southeast of the present site of Pocatello, and over an 8 month period, thousands of cubic MILES of water poured through the Portneuf gap just south of Pocatello and eventually found its way to the Pacific Ocean. This flood carried with it many large boulders from south of here. Here’s just one that is visible here on the Greenway. at “Prehistoric Park”:

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Here’s another little park on the Greenway – Pioneer Park, dedicated to the early pioneers who settled here. In the background is “Old Town” Pocatello. You can see the old Union Pacific Railroad Depot in the background.

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It was a beautiful day and a really nice walk — I’m looking forward to doing more. ┬áSee you then!

At Last!

Today the daffodils started to bloom!
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Spring looks like it’s here to stay. Not only are the daffodils blooming, but a couple days ago Sue and I took a walk and found some of our local fields are turning green.
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It’s great to live in the country. Here’s another shot of Sue on our walk inspecting a weeping willow that’s budding and about to welcome spring.
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I hope that wherever you are, spring is as beautiful as here.

Spring!

It just turned Spring a couple of days ago. The snow was gone, and for a few days last week it was warm enough to work in the yard in my shirtsleeves.

About a week ago, I took a walk in our local city park. One of the yards bordering the park was full of songbirds making a wonderful racket! On a closer look, I saw that this yard had about five bird feeders in it. I told Sue – she said she saw an ad in the paper for bird feeders, so we went out and bought a couple. I filled one with seed and hung it in the tree in the front yard where Sue can see it from her office.

For the next week it hung there, ignored by all the birds in the neighborhood.

This morning when I looked out the window everything was covered with a fresh blanket of snow. Isn’t this supposed to be Spring? Then, during breakfast, Sue called out from her office, “Look, there’s a bird on our feeder!”
Sure enough, there was. Over the next hour we watched as more and more birds found our feeder in the snow. There were finches, tri-colored blackbirds,and several other species I couldn’t identify. They emptied the feeder, then left.

Right now, the snow is falling again, and the birds have gone. But we refilled the feeder – they’ll be back.

I think we need more feeders.

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Red Hill

Sue and I took a walk today on another part of the Portneuf Greenway. This time on the Red Hill section. This trail winds north on the west side of Red Hill and ends on the ISU campus by the old athletic field. Here’s some pictures:
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What a beautiful day!

Idaho State University

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On Saturday, Sue and I took a drive and found ourselves at the campus of Idaho State University, so we got out of the car and walked around a bit. It’s quite an attractive campus. One of the treats we discovered there is the Idaho Museum of Natural History, which we understand will be getting a facelift this spring, and in addition is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. The museum features a number of nice exhibits on local wildlife and geology, including a mounted skeleton of a prehistoric bison with horns spread about 8 feet wide!