On a warm January afternoon, we visited the Yellow Birch Ravine, near Taswell, Indiana. This area is a 441 acre nature preserve that contains many deep valleys and steep rocky cliffs. The combination of tall cliffs and narrow valleys, at times, creates a microclimate more like you might find in the Appalachian Mountains. Hemlock trees and even a small cliff side patch of mountain laurels can be found on the slopes in this area.
Well we got a little busy and forgot to post about this adventure. In early October of this year, we made trip down to the South Cumberland State Park Unit called Savage Gulf and visited the Stone Door area in the Savage Gulf. This was going to be a trip to see some fall colors, but we were a little early. Instead, we were treated to some steep, rocky hiking, and several waterfalls.
The highest waterfall in the state of Illinois is an impressive site after a rain. In the afternoon the sun strikes the falling water and makes small rainbows that come and goes as the clouds pass overhead. The water falls at least 50 feet over a large stone house or overhang. This falls goes by two different names depending upon who you talk to, Cedar Falls or Pakentuck. The area is textbook Shawnee National Forest with rocky creeks, boulders, cliffs and waterfalls. The area around the falls has many areas to explore including a large overhang with an old well in the back, numerous boulders with one wedged between two larger ones to make an arch, and our favorite the “Fat Man Squeeze."