22 October 2014

Going For A Boring Walk: Cougar Bay Preserve {North Idaho}

Just a few minutes outside of Coeur d'Alene in North Idaho is Cougar Bay, an 88 acre preserve protected by The Nature Conservancy. This is how they describe the area:
"Bordered by towering coniferous forests and lush meadows, Cougar Bay attracts migrating and nesting waterfowl, numerous shorebirds, songbirds, moose, beaver, otter and deer."
On paper, it seemed like a nice idea for a walk. In reality, it was a little boring. We didn't see any of the advertised wildlife. I really wanted to see a moose. I would have settled for a deer. Instead, we saw a wooly caterpillar.

This wooly caterpillar was one of the highlights of our walk. This particular caterpillar was moving. We saw two little girls on another part of the trail looking at a dead caterpillar and asking their mother what was wrong with it. We told them that there were some other ones further up that were moving. The mom seemed relieved and they set off to find more interactive caterpillars. I used to love these when I was a kid. They're supposed to predict how bad the winter will be, but I don't remember how to read their stripes anymore.

This stone thingamabob was another one of the highlights. You can probably tell by now that there weren't too many highlights on this walk. Scott added a tiny rock to the top of it. It didn't collapse. Which is a shame as it might have added some excitement to our walk.

There is a one mile loop trail on the Nature Conservancy preserve which connects to a Bureau of Land Management (BLM) trail which you can follow along the bay. At the end of that trail, we saw the third and final highlight of the walk. A rusted out old tractor. You might think it would make up for the lack of moose. It didn't. Have a look. I think you'll agree with us.

Have you ever been to Cougar Bay? Did you see a moose? If you did, can you email us a picture? Pretty please. Also, do you know how to read wooly caterpillars? If so, based on the picture above, how is winter looking to shape up in Idaho?

Walk on 28 September 2014

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