Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Dogwood Canyon Autumn Transitions

Dogwood Canyon is a 2200 acre nature park that sprawls across the Missouri/Arkansas border, a few miles outside Branson, Missouri. There are numerous activities that one can do there, such as hiking, bicycle riding, fishing, horseback riding, ATV & Segway rentals, tram tours, dining, picnicking and even lodging!

There is a segment of the population that would like to get outside and enjoy nature, but various obstacles limit their ability to do so. Dogwood Canyon was Taylor-made for these folks: The hiking trails are paved, making them smooth riding for those in wheel chairs, or those with other forms of mobility restrictions. It is also suitable for single travelers, who might not feel comfortable going into the woods to hike by themselves.

The paved hiking/biking trails will take you past numerous geological formations associated with the Ozarks, such as the moss-covered limestone bluffs, shown in this photograph.

There are waterfalls in the park that create reflecting pools where you can sit and do some "reflecting" or meditating at your leisure.

My son and I took advantage of the area that Dogwood Canyon had decorated up for their autumn chuck wagon dinners, to pose for a family photo (thank goodness for the "automatic, self-timer" setting on my camera!)

Since the park has numerous water features, there are numerous bridges throughout. Each one seems designed to enhance its natural surroundings. This "stonebridge" built of native Ozark rock, produces an oval frame for the water it spans. The irregular lines of its masonry seem to transition the eye up to the horizontal lines of the limestone bluff behind it.

This bridge transitions the visitor from an open meadow to a path along the ridge line, and its low design does not cover up the beauty of the overhanging bluffs it leads to.

The gentle curve design of this bridge transitions the visitor from a lower part of the park to a section of slightly higher elevation.

And who doesn't love the warm feelings of nostalgia that a covered bridge can provide, as the traveler transitions from one side, across a swirling river, safely to the other side. It can be a reminder that God is our cover, as we transition from one period of life, to the next. Remembering that autumn is the time of year that we transition from one SEASON to the next, I thought of the verse that says "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven." (Ecclesiastes 3:1) One definition of transition is that it is a movement or development from one form or stage to another. I am hoping that this blog post will TRANSITION you out of inactivity and into God's great outdoors! Enjoy the scenery as the landscape transitions from one season to the next! You can learn about a wonderful place to do this in the Ozarks by clicking on http://www.dogwoodcanyon.org/ . Wishing you additional, transitional smiles! Tricia

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