By Wade Ellett, Let’s Move QC Outdoors
North of the QC on the Great River Trail, you’ll find many spots worthy of your extra time. One of the most interesting spots is the Thomson-Fulton Sand Prairie.
You may notice the temperature rising by a few degrees.
It’s not just in your head, though, you’re walking along the Thomson-Fulton Sand Prairie, with a microclimate that will radiate heat!
The Thomson-Fulton Sand Prairie is an amazing spot here along the Mississippi River. Its sand was deposited millions of years ago, and still remains in
contrast to the surrounding fields and prairie land.
You’ll find some unusual flora and fauna here.
For flora fans, there’s little bluestem, three-awn grass, plains prickly pear cactus and June grass. You might also see big-flowered penstemon.
Fauna includes western hog-nosed snakes, bullsnakes and six lined racerunner snakes. You’ll also find horned larks and grasshopper sparrows.
The ornate box turtle, which is a threatened species in Illinois, also makes its home here.
Give them right-of-way, as these little guys and gals have really suffered due to habitat destruction.
The prairie features about 2 miles of delightful walking and bike trails, which you’ll want to take slow to enjoy the scenery.
To get there, take Highway 84 north out of Fulton for 3 miles, turn west on Lock Road, then north on a sand road called Railroad Lane. It’s a little more than a mile up on the west side of Railroad Lane.
If you still have energy after your visit, swing back down into Fulton and enjoy a romp through the olden days at Heritage Canyon!
|Meet Wade Ellett, Let’s Move Quad Cities Outdoor Blogger. Wade is an outdoor adventurer who shares his passion for QC outdoor adventures here! Read his other posts by clicking here.|