Monday, October 15, 2012

Riverside Park and Devil's Staircase Trail - October 2, 2012

After our game of disc golf we decided to head to Riverside Park and take some pictures of the fall colors...and, of course, play a little. After taking some nice pictures we made an exciting discovery...

First...the pictures of the colors and the kids...

 Fall colors are beautiful along the Rock River.

 I had five of my grandchildren with me...Wesley, Jacob, Douglas, Charles and Diana.


 The children waved at the many passing boats.

 And, of course, they threw rocks in the water. Here is Wesley winding up for a throw.

 And, also played on the playground. Charles and Jacob teeter while Wesley watches.

 We saw this amazing tree and just had to take a bunch of pictures here. They were looking at a lure that was dangling from a branch.

 Some of the other amazing trees along the bank of the river.

Then, we made our discovery!!! Wisconsin Ice Age Trail - Devil's Staircase Segment

The children wanted to climb the stairs. I said they could go up, but I wouldn't.

 We also love to pose on stairs. The children figured it was a given that we would take a picture on the staircase.

Then they begged me to come up because there was a trail and we just had to see where it went. They assured me it was very cool. So up I went. Slowly...but I made it up.
 A picture from the top looking down.

 The children were waiting at the top already posed for a picture...LOL Do I have them trained, or what?!?

 Even the first looks made it worth the climb up the stairs...

 There were several of these "caves" that the children would loved to have explored, but most of them were high in the rocks.

 For the most part, the path was an easy walk with the high rocks to the left...

 While Douglas is the oldest and most often in charge of things, I found it amazing how Charles just naturally became the "leader" of our group. He was the one usually at the head of the line...

 Charles has the knickname "Hawk" because of his sharp eyes and love of birds of prey. Here he spotted something red that had to have a closer look.

 More of the rocks.
Jacob pointed out the "crack" in the rock.

 On we go...

 More to check out and on again...

 To the right along the path was a tree-filled slope down to the river.

 Another discovery was these....
 They were very hard and firmly attached to the tree...and so beautiful.
 Wesley could not resist trying to pull one off.

 Another view of the river. It was such a nice blue through the trees.

 At times the path became a little steep.

 They saw a chipmunk. But it scurried so quickly that Grandma missed it in the picture I tried to take of it.
 It WAS sitting so cute on this branch.

 Marching along...

 Wesley jumped up on this stump and said "It is a toilet."  It was much more understandable when he got off...

 The kids thought this was a path. I explained that it was actually erosion...and area washed out by rain. But they still had to climb it to see what was at the top.
 It was fairly steep and they had a difficult time climbing. At points they were on their knees crawling.
 Almost to the top.
 When I shouted up and asked them what was there, the reply was, "Nothing!"

 So they all slid back down.  In places they were sliding a little bit fast. But they all seemed to think it was quite the adventure. I hope their mothers are as excited when they see the dirt on their knees and backsides.

 Looking back and ahead along the path while I wait for them to slide down.

Off again...

 More views of the river below us.

A man came along from behind us and quickly passed by. He said he had not walked this trail in years so he wasn't not sure how much further it went. So we walked a little longer before turning back.

 It looked like a place begging to be climbed, so up they attempted to go.
 This was as far as they could go...
 ...but they seemed please with themselves.

 Come on, Grandma. Let's go a little farther.

We are on the way back now and Charles was looking more closely and had to check out many of these holes.
 He was walking back by me as the other three boys trooped ahead. He says: "I hope my kids like to do this. It would be lonely if they don't want to go with me."  WOW...I assured him that with his love of nature, if he shared his joy of it with them while they were young, I was sure they would be joining him in the woods. He seemed relieved at that.

Diana stops to rest and pose. It was a lot of walking for a little girl. But she is determined to go where the boys go.

The colors were so beautiful.

Spider webs along the rocks.

Douglas waits for me.

Back down in the park. The kids raced off to get a drink.

The ride down the river on the pontoon must have been so awesome today with the glorious colors.

We will definately be visiting this trail again. It was definately worth the climb.

Diana...  This tree is so pretty.