Sunday, January 1, 2017

First Day Hike: Prairie State Park

Alli, Clara and I went to the Prairie State Park for a First Day Hike.
Prairie State Park is in the southwest portion of Missouri.  It contains almost all of the remaining prairie left in Missouri.  Prairie used to cover 33% of Missouri, now it is down to 0.5%.
We went to go see the American Bison.  There is no buffalo in Missouri, we are totally on the wrong continent to see buffalo.  You would have to travel to Asia or Africa to view those wonderful creatures.  The First Day Hike provided for a Naturalist to lead the Hike to find the Bison.
There was a large group of people who showed up.  Not surprising, it was around fifty five degrees out.  Perfect temp for a hike.
We started up the prairie.  Once we rounded the first turn, we could see four bison in the distance.  One small, one large and two medium ones.
The Naturalist then discussed the biodiversity in the area.  How there are only 100 native prairie chickens left.  How the farms that are in the area have destroyed the prairie lands.  How everything comes with a price.
He also found an owl pellet and pulled it apart.  There was an intact mouse skull that was amazing.  I pulled apart an owl pellet later during the hike, mine had gotten smashed though.  Yes, I used my bear hands to pull apart owl puke.  Hands are washable and totally a teachable moment.
Toward the end of our hike, we did find a herd of bison of around 11.
They kept getting closer to us as we watched.

Did you participate in a First Day Hike?  Where did you go?
What did you do on the first day of the New Year?
The Bison in the Interpretive Center is the only one you would want to get close enough to, to take a picture with.
The Interpretive Center actually had some pretty awesome exhibits and informational things.

This large fellow lead us to the rest of the Bison Herd.
It was exciting to see them.
The size of them are amazing.

The girls are both taking picture of them.

To the left is the Bison heard.

There are around 11 in this herd.

Wild Indigo

Passed out teenager.


  1. I did the first day hike at my local state park in VA! I actually went by myself instead of wth my kids but really enjoyed myself partly because I didn't hear complaints of feet hurting, how cold or hungry they were. It was a great idea for the parks to suggest!

    1. That is awesome! Only one of the kids was mine, the other wanted to come with us. I did hear plenty of little ones on the hike complaining though, but it was okay, once they saw the bison they were pretty happy.

  2. I love the idea of First Day Hike, and this is the first time I've heard of it. #lifegoal for 2018 haha! How cool that you live near bison.

  3. I like that - Hands are washable and totally a teachable moment.

  4. Fun pictures. For the first day of 2017 - I read a book, ate a cake that I had baked for myself, spoke to family over calls and found sometime to think about my life and be grateful.