Day Trip to the Emiquon
Took a trip west to Havana today to see one of my old work haunts, The Nature Conservancy’s Emiquon National Wildlife Area. The purpose of the trip was to do some reconnaissance prior to taking our Camera Club to the area for a fall photographic expedition. The Emiquon is adjacent to the west bank of the Illinois River, opposite Havana. It is an excellent example of returning what was farmland to wetland. When we were working there, conducting a study of groundwater conditions prior to flooding, the Emiquon property was still being farmed and we were able to drive across most of the area. Not now! Take a look at this:
The above image is looking northeast from a viewing stand constructed by TNC to allow visitors to view the flora and fauna that abound the Emiquon. The tree line on the horizon is the Illinois River about 1 mile distant. We were hoping to see more birds, but apparently at this time of day (late morning), most have left. More will return in the evening, spend the might feeding and resting, then off again on their way south. So, we were left to look at a lot of water, a number of ducks and coots, a proud heron and a white pelican paddling by. My recommendation to the Club will be to get there early, either by staying overnight the night before, or leaving Champaign at 5ish so as to get there at first light (sunrise being around 7 these days).
Before we crossed the river to see the Emiquon, we stopped in Havana to see their historic water tower, built in the late 1800s. Here’s a view:
Now a couple more pics from Emiquon.
I’ll finish with a view of the rolling Mason County countryside and our great Illinois sky.