A couple of years ago I wrote about an Iowa state park called The Ledges. At the time, a road in the park had been closed for a couple of years. Extensive rains had flooded the park and caused erosion, so the “canyon road” was closed. I enjoyed the day walking the road and taking pictures, but thought it was a shame that we neglected the maintenance of this public asset so much.
Sunday I visited the park and had a completely different experience. The place was packed.
One of the features of the park is a winding stream and a series of water crossings where the cars drive through the water that is only inches deep. So it becomes a giant water park.
But it’s a water park with minnows and snakes and bugs and frogs. There is no place I know of in Iowa where small kids can experience nature like they can at The Ledges.
As much as I enjoy visiting a natural area and having no contact with other people, Iowa needs to have this place open. Children (and adults) need to wade in shallow streams. They need to be able to interact with snakes and bugs.
We have a governor who under-funds the state parks in the name of fiscal responsibility. Fiscal responsibility be damned. We need to wade in the creek.