My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Visit to Bidwell Park

After shopping at the only grocery store in Willows, it was clear I would have to go further afield to find the foods I eat and find a cheaper place to shop.  I was directed to Chico, the nearest big city to us.  It is about thirty-five miles away.  I was also given a list of things to do around Chicoand Bidwell Park, advertised as one of the largest municipal parks in the nation caught my attention.  There is a lower area, that is more like a city park and an upper area that is divided into several sections in a majestic canyon through which Chico Creek Flows. It totals 3,670 acres.

I went up back roads and saw lots of nut farms.  I also had a good view of the Coast Range and got to see some sandhill cranes. They  only fly over Sacramento NWR but feed at some of the other wildlife refuges in our complex and in rice fields. 

The park has a lovely mix of meadows and woodlands. The first thing to catch my eye was a flame red tree against a tan background.

I pulled into Five Mile Recreation Area and found  a paved bike/hike trail that went over Big Chico Creek.
There was also a beautiful picnic area there.

I continued to the end of the road for cars.  But horses, bikes and hikers can use the trails, some paved and some dirt. This area is in the foothills of the Cascade Mountain Range and has beautiful low hills with rock outcroppings.

Several trails parallel the creek which has several swimming holes in it.  I won't be here when it's swimming time, though. I am looking forward to taking a long hike or bike trip the next time I come to shop.

And I did find a Budget Market across from Trader Joe's so I was able to find everything I wanted except for light Miracle Whip.  I did see a Safeway on they way home on the main highways so I should be fixed for food.