Monday, March 14, 2016

A Hike at Doctors Park

There wasn't enough snow to really embrace winter,  so I just stayed indoors a lot.  Now we've had a few nice days, getting outdoors is wonderful!  Today I laced up some new hiking boots.   My sister and I are planning to hike for a week in Vermont in late May.  I wanted to use them on some hills without asphalt or concrete under my feet, so I went to Doctors Park.

I started out with mittens, hat, and scarf, but after walking for awhile, I took them off.  There are a couple of ways to get to the beach and both are downhill.  I took the paved trail from the parking lot.  I noticed there is a new sign which helps show people how to find the beach. Doctors Park Friends have been active in making updates to the park. The alternative is a stairway from a field near the toilets building.

 The beach seems to be smaller this year.  I read that lake levels are higher than last year, but it's not by much.  Debris is strewn all over the beach as well.  This is good if you're looking for driftwood and beach glass. I'm sure all of it will be cleaned up once the summer swimming season begins.

Doctors Park is right beside the Schlitz Audubon Center, so if you're up for a short hike, you can start in one park and go to the next.  I wanted to see the view from the tower at Schlitz, so I walked up the path, but it was locked.  If you hike there, you do need to check in at the main building and pay a user fee.  Of course, there's no fee to use the county parks.

In the woods I spotted the first spring wildflowers.  It always makes me hopeful.  There were plenty of woodpeckers, crows, chipmunks, and squirrels. It won't be long before the park is full of migrating birds. This is just one of many parks on the Milwaukee Birding Trail map.

Like most parks, there are no toilets open yet, so plan accordingly.  I hope you find some time to get out and enjoy our parks very soon.

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