by Lance Gideon

NEW CASTLE, INDIANA-The woods around Indiana are coming back to life and so are the parks throughout the State of Indiana. With the recent warm temperatures, my wife and I recently traveled to Summit Lake State Park to walk the park’s trail 2 and to take our daughter to the playground.

My wife and I first parked our car at the trail head of trail 2 in Summit Lake’s Campground B. Our first stop at the park was the playground in the campground. There is a baby swing on the swing set as well as a couple of slides and play set. We pushed Rayne in the swing for about 5 minutes and then decided to show her the slide. After a few more minutes at the slide, we decided to head to the trail head and start our walk.

As we started our walk, we noticed several robins in on the trail. Rayne also noticed the birds, frogs, and bugs on the trail. This part of the trail has a lot of younger trees and saplings and winds through the woods and has some very beautiful views of the lake. As we walked on the trail, there is a lot of mud from the recent rain falls. In the mud, we could see several animal tracks, including deer, and probably some domestic dog.

Along the trail, we noticed several patches of wild violets. We also noticed several wild raspberry plants as we walked, and they’ll be in season in the near future. Soon, we were near a spot on the trail where someone can see most of the lake. My wife and I noticed that the water level seems to be up compared to recent years, and with the recent rain fall that is not really that surprising.

As we walked away from that view of the lake, we noticed several spots wear beaver knocked several trees down. There were several stumps that were several years old, but a couple that looked relatively fresh. At one spot, we could see a tree that had been recently knocked down by a beaver and where he, or she, was working on some other trees in the immediate area.

Soon, we saw a cove on the lake that we enjoy when we’re out on our kayaks, and I know that we’re both excited about the nearing kayak season. Along this portion of the trail, we could hear frogs in the close wetlands. This section of the trail has the oldest set of trees in it and has very little ground clutter. We also could hear frogs croaking nearby and several more birds. Finally, we noticed more wildflowers, including spring beauties and trillium. This is the last section of the trail and we were soon back in the campground. We walked back to our car and packed Rayne back in her car seat and headed home after another fun day in one of Indiana’s beautiful state parks.