Friday, May 16, 2014

Galloway Creek Nature Park

by Pa Rock
Nature Lover

This afternoon I decided that it was high time I got out and started exploring my hood.  Several weeks ago I had driven to a small, unnamed cemetery just up the road and wandered among the stones to see what I could learn about the history of my neighborhood.  The earliest marker was for a lady who had been born in the 1830's and died just after 1900.  The latest stone was just barely into the present century.   The cemetery had been freshly mowed, but it still had the feel of being basically abandoned.

Today's outing was on foot - because I really need the exercise.  I walked up my lane to the Galloway Creek Nature Park, circumnavigated the park via its nature trail, and then hiked home.   Although I don't know how far the park is from my house, nor the length of the nature trail, the entire nonstop effort took a total of forty-nine minutes.  It was an invigorating experience.

Here are a couple of things I learned on the walkabout.  First, the park was constructed by the West Plains Rotary in 2005 to honor the community's centennial.  Galloway Creek, is not dried up, although I had heard rumors to the contrary.  True, it's been raining lately, but the parts of the little creek, as seen from the three picturesque bridges that cross it at various points along the footpath,  appear to be deep enough to be in existence year-round.

Sections of the park are identified as "tall grass prairie," though some of those had been recently mowed.   There are some beautiful trees along the trail, including a bunch of young sycamores - enough to keep the little park well shaded until the next centennial.   There were also notices of the park being a wildlife refuge, and although I didn't encounter any wildlife, I suspect that it abounds along the creek, especially very early and very late in the day.

In addition to the three bridges, there is also a nice covered pavilion with picnic tables, other picnic tables in one grove of large trees, and numerous benches for sitting and contemplating nature along the trail.

There always seems to be a group or two using the open pavilion, and one day as I was driving by I even noticed a wedding taking place there.

I think I have acquired a good neighbor in the Galloway Creek Nature Park.  My intention is to visit frequently.

No comments: