20 October 2011
Palisade State Park, South Dakota
Our Family Reunion/60th Anniversary Celebration was held at Palisade State Park in South Dakota, north of Sioux Falls. I had never been there, but among the early photos of my Dad, there is one marked Palisades on the back, so I was looking forward to seeing the area in addition to spending time with all the relatives! Just after sunrise one morning, I took a walk along Split Rock Creek. It was gorgeous! This photo is taken from the bridge shown below.
Red granite walls line the creek. It has a lovely sheen and reflective quality compared to all the red sandstone that I'm so used to seeing in the southwest!
The path was lovely too. Mossy verges, canopies of trees and a well packed path made walking very pleasant. In spots, a little agility was needed where there were rock steps to negotiate!
While most of the landscape had gone to shades of brown, gold, rust and green, there was an occasional spot of color! This lone blue flower (chicory, I believe) really stood out!
The moss made beautiful patterns on the fallen trees.
I loved the still pools of water along the creek.
Everywhere I went, I noticed the wonderful moss.
In one spot, I found a bright clump of mushrooms!
And a little further along, a whole tree trunk covered in a carpet of lush moss!
I walked as far along the left side of the creek as I could. So lovely!
The return path climbed up between the rocks, where I found this tree limb grabbing hold of the rock wall as it grew over it!
Most of the oak trees here had already lost their leaves, revealing their wonderful shapes.
This small creek flows into Split Rock Creek. All the water here moved along so peacefully and gently. It was a delightful early morning walk!
The reunion was fabulous and as always, such a pleasure to see all the cousins and Aunts and Uncles again!