Hidden Oaks Point – 2017

[To see photos and stories of this prairie in other years, go to the links on the main Hidden Oaks Point page.]

This year, for the first time, we hired some folks to do some work for us.  We asked them to start with clearing Hidden Oaks Hillside – the southwest facing hillside on Hidden Oaks Point.

2/6/2017  Here’s the point before they started.  Mike and I have worked on it for several years – cutting small trees and brush – so it’s much more open that it was when we started.


2/6/2017  This was the view from the top – before they started.


2/6/2017  This is the way the hill looks from farther down 3 Finger Valley.


2/13/2017  And just coming into Goldenrod Valley.


2/13/2017  They’re starting to cut.  I marked all the trees I wanted them to save, and they cut the rest.




2/14/2017  More trees coming down, and it’s looking more open.


2/14/2017   Here they are, working.  They are Kule Region Forestry – from LaCrosse.


2/14/2017   The crew from Kule Region Forestry – Kyle, Beth, and Erik




2/15/2017  It’s much more open now.


2/15/2017  Now our job is to clean up all the slash.


2/15/2017  I found a small clump of Rattlesnake Plantain – a native orchid – on the new savanna hillside.


2/15/2017  Lots of hauling to do.




3/11/2017  We’ve started working, but there’s still a lot to go.




3/15/2017  Mike picking up piles with the tractor


3/17/2017  We’ve gotten most of the brush piles cleared.  Now all that’s left are the round logs.  And they roll!




3/18/2017  We made up a game to see how far we could roll each log.  The hill is very steep, but there were lots of hazards – cut stumps, other logs, and the logs aren’t evenly round, so they usually roll at an angle.  So it was a challenge to get them all the way down in one roll.






5/12/2017  But we finally finished.




5/22/2017  Back to the top, to the west facing slop of the prairie


6/1/2017  The lower slope, just north of where it was cleared, has some nice savanna plants.  This is Ebony Speenwort – a fern that grows in savannas.


6/1/2017  Another plant on the lower, cleared slope – Hoary Puccoon




6/24/2017  White Wild Indigo blooming




8/18/2017  The bluff prairie on top of the point




10/20/2017  Bluff prairie