Monday, April 18, 2011

~ Back in Jackson County ~ Dike 17 ~

I think I shall continue to write about the things I found interesting in Jackson County, as I did not keep up with the blog I had for a short time there. Tonight I am writing about a place in Jackson County called ‘Dike 17.’

If you continued down Highway 54, heading East, you would come to a Rustic Road to your right - Settlement. That was a beautiful place to drive. We hardly ever ran into another vehicle so we could drive as slow as we pleased. It was a wooded area with a few open areas where small herds of deer gathered to eat. There was a stream to the left of the road and at one place along that stream there was a bend; and in that bend a Great Blue Heron loved to fish. Over the years of birding I have noticed that herons have their favorite fishing spots just like us humans. Further on there was a small parking area to the right. It was a wide open space with trees on one side and hills on the other and a tall overlook almost in the middle. We went there quite often and when we would go around sunset, we would get to see a Great Blue Heron fly in for the night, perched on the high corner of that overlook. There were two levels to it; the lower one being my favorite, as I am nervous of heights. But occasionally I would go on to the higher level where my breath was taken away at what lay beyond. I always knew what to expect… Tall grasses bending to and fro when the breeze changed direction, and the deep blue flowages beyond. But I was always caught off-guard. God paints the most beautiful scenes!

On two occasions that I can remember, we walked back the trail to those flowages. Along the way we saw a porcupine climbing a tree, a garter snake slithered across the path while the Grey Catbird sat in his favorite bush, cocking his head at each person who passed. When we reached the flowages there would be Canada Geese, Mallards, Wood Ducks and muskrats.

Sometimes I wish I had been able to spend more time at the overlook and climbed to the very top to see the stunning beauty of the Wisconsin scenery. For not long after they said it would need repair, they instead tore it down with no intent on replacing it. Perhaps someday, they will.

Enough for tonight. I am sure another Jackson County memory will pop into my head tomorrow. :)

~ Mara

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