Yesterday, we went for a picnic in our favorite State park - Indian Cave State Park. We have camped there for 20 years and it has provided us with many memories. We like it because it is a beautiful and quiet park - not always quiet, when families are enjoying themselves, but always beautiful. We often went for a week or more in May and again in September, when it was more quiet. Indian Cave Park is popular because of the migrating birds that come through in May, mushroom hunters, a variety of wildlife, the fun family activities, and it's location along the historical Missouri River. While we were excited to visit 'our' park, it drew a lump in my throat and tears to my eyes when I saw the extent of the overflowing Missouri River into the park. It will be a long time before the park is as we remember it. We have seen it through mud slides from abundant rains, and high water before - but never anything this bad.
Yesterday, the butterflies were as thick as the mosquitoes are. We had to shoo them off before we could get into the car.
Here are some of the beauties ~
I don't know the names of them, but I have never seen so many different butterflies at one time outside of a butterfly pavilion at a zoo. This photo is on an access road to the boat dock to the Missouri River . . . that is now about 1/2 mile from this spot due to flooding ~
There are always many turkeys in the park. We also saw Indigo Buntings, Brown Thrushes, Wood Thrushes, Kingfishers, various woodpeckers, Eastern Pewee, Eastern Phoebe . . . just to name a few ~
Obviously, we couldn't do any hiking yesterday. Many of the trails are under water. Our son has participated in bicycle races through the lush trails in the park ~
Exploring the Caves, that date back thousands of years etched with ancient Indian picture writings. These access walkways are now under water ~
The road to the right leads to the Cave, the road to the left is a special use area used for horses and day activities. I never dreamed I'd see ducks swimming on the road to the Cave . . . yesterday I did ~
This is the Missouri River as it looked yesterday. It was a hazy day, and instead of being able to look across fields to I-29 in Missouri, we saw water up to the interstate.
While we felt the loss of a park we love as it was, it is nothing compared to the families and businesses that are scurrying to fight the Missouri River. We drove over the bridge to Iowa at Nebraska City. It was sad to see the businesses sandbagged to their roofs, hoping to survive the next few months. One gas station was still open, but everyone will probably be leaving the area in the next day or so when the road is closed - it was down to one lane in areas yesterday. Our hearts go out to those that are threatened to losing their homes, businesses and jobs.