posted Mar 28, 2012, 12:13 PM by alina coryell   [ updated Apr 21, 2012, 4:24 PM ]
Everything is blooming, and Tuscaloosa seems to be populated by blooms in colors that haven't been named yet. It's a wonderful time to explore Hurricane Creek with your family and nourish a sense of wonder in your children. Here are 25 different free resources and ideas for enjoying spring at the creek with your family. 
  1. Go wading in the water and look for aquatic life.
  2. Print and play with the Spring Play Pack from Woodland Trust.
  3. Print and use the Woodland Log Book from Woodland Trust.
  4. Hike the 5 Senses Trail at Hurricane Creek.
  5. Go fishing at Hurricane Creek Park.
  6. Discover local wildlife by identifying animal tracks in the mud, dirt, and sand. You can use this Animal Track ID guide for help.
  7. Take an afternoon to do your own family creek cleanup. Make it an annual family tradition to teach kids about conservation.
  8. Bring some watercolor paints and paint a creek scene using creek water.
  9. Go on a hike and catch a glimpse of the tree which has grown into the rock wall at Hurricane Creek Park. 
  10. Learn to identify trees in our state with the help of this handout from local 4-H.
  11. Find the tree with the thickest trunk and determine its age
  12. Or learn the story of a stump's life by examining its rings.
  13. See if you can spot a dragonfly darting over the water. Dragonflies mate in the spring and are out hunting partners based on scent, or pheromone, trails.
  14. Try a botany scavenger hunt.
  15. Take photos of spring plants and wildlife and email them to us so we can share them online.
  16. Find a dragonfly nymph and watch it burrow back into the sand.
  17. Look for mayflies, those magical insects that live for one day and often indicate the status of other aquatic life, including fish.
  18. Listen to our first Creek Conversations podcast with Alabama author and Friend of the Creek, Aileen Kilgore Henderson.
  19. Hunt for mushrooms and morels during the damp season which brings them from the ground. You can use Roger's Mushrooms to assist you in identification or call the UA Arboretum to learn more about your finds.
  20. Go canoe camping.
  21. Create your own Hurricane Creek version of Rachel Carson's beautiful book, Sense of Wonder.
  22. Find out what's growing on at the UA Arboretum and then take some time to identify similar (or different) plants and trees at the creek.
  23. Find a longleaf pine at Hurricane Creek Park. Then take a photo and email it to us so we can add it to our Life at Hurricane Creek Collection.
  24. Skip stones and note the different textures and grains. Talk about what affects the way in which the stone skips or how many times it skips.
  25. Watch the sunrise over the creek in those spring-filled clouds of mist and enjoy a picnic breakfast.