Cedar Bluff | Hiking the Wetland

by Jim and Melanie

What better way to enjoy the scents and colors of spring than being outside? With rain in the forecast for several days to come, we chose Saturday for an outing. The temperature warmed to upper 70s by mid-day, but the morning was fresh. Clouds and sunlight played in the sky, elbowing each other for position.

A friend suggested we check out this county park located in Cedar County, Iowa. Here is a linkΒ to a Google map if you want to explore. In the map link, we parked in the small lot just left of the road. We got out and started walking west.


There were no other cars in the lot and no signs of others in the area. It looked like we’d have the place to ourselves. That thought was banished, though, just after we stepped onto the path. Two red-headed woodpeckers chased through the trees on our left. As we watched them, an indigo bunting came into view. Next, a rose-breasted grosbeak turned, displaying the patch of red from which its name comes. Clearly, we were not alone.

A bird blind shed hugged one edge of the trail. The feeders weren’t filled and there were no signs the blind was tended.

We turned to head into timber, closer to the river. Birdsong filled the air, including persistent honking of geese forward and to our left.

A barred owl called to our right. Intrigued, we left the path and headed deeper into the woods. As our eyes searched high for the owl, we spotted Baltimore orioles flitting through the trees at high speed.

A small creek rippled. Jams of old trees, twisted and snarled, gave testament to the power of water.

We were not alone in the wetland woods. Other birds we saw or heard included pheasant, wrens, a brown-headed cowbird, red-winged blackbirds, catbirds, and a rooster. Just the right kind of company for a green-scented spring day.


13 thoughts on “Cedar Bluff | Hiking the Wetland

  1. shoreacres

    I could almost smell that “green.” There’s something about the combination of rotting vegetation, mud and new growth that’s nearly intoxicating.

    1. Jim in IA Post author

      Melanie remarked as we were walking about how green everything smelled. Good thing we didn’t get intoxicated. It was easy to get disoriented. No marked trails. We followed some faint deer trails.

  2. Thread crazy

    Thanks for taking us along on your hike – what a gorgeous place to visit. From your descriptions, if I listened closely, I too could hear the birds chatting away at one another. Some of my fondest memories are those hiking trips hubby and I used to take.

    1. Jim in IA Post author

      Thank you for coming along. It was a very isolated place. The birds were busy.

      We enjoy finding those special places with each other. You know how it feels.


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