Satisfy your senses with an outing to Hidden Valley Preserve. Short, hoarse phrases give away a singing scarlet tanager atop the talus slope while a Louisiana waterthrush whistles and twitters beside the cascading tributary. Northerly aspects cast shade over the trail and a breeze funneling through the narrow gully bring goosebumps to exposed skin. The river rushes by providing a visual, auditory, and olfactory experience of its own. Sensation abounds to a point where tolerance takes hold and legs power toward the next bend in anticipation of another fix. Be advised, it is in one’s interest to stop, absorb, and examine the forest’s more minute wonders this place has to offer.
An especially rich and rare community of wildflowers adorn this land, including some northern-affinity species that are uncommon in the state. Contributing to our growing outreach and programming aspirations, Peary and BK Stafford led a hike focusing on the identification and ecology of these specialized plants pollinated by insects. If you were unable to attend, make sure to mark your calendar because this event was an absolute treat that we hope will continue for years to come. Below are photos of wildflowers observed from approximately 1.5 miles of trail.