Getting in/out of vans; driving about 140 miles, approximately 3 hours riding time. Walking about 4 miles; unpaved, crushed rock walking trails, relatively flat.
At the hotel.
We will check out of the hotel, hop into the vans, and set out on a field trip with our expert naturalists to explore the floodplain of the upper Mississippi River National Wildlife Refuge and Whitewater State Park. The Mississippi River National Wildlife Refuge lies between four states along nearly 250 miles of floodplain along the Mississippi River: Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois. Whitewater is a mini Ozarks with limestone cliffs, caves, bluffs, clear, spring-fed trout-filled waters and a diverse forest bursting with spring ephemerals. We will identify emerging wildflowers and migrating waterfowl, shorebirds, and songbirds.
At a park in the field, we will make our lunches with all the fixings.
We will ride to the National Eagle Center and see live bald and golden eagles up close, view wild eagles along the river, and examine the interactive and informative displays on these majestic creatures. Center interpretive staff will lead our exploration. We’ll then ride to lunch.
At a local restaurant.
We will ride on to our hotel and check in. The remainder of the evening is at leisure.