Little One at Liberty Park

Liberty Park is located in one of the downtown neighborhoods of Salt Lake City, Utah.  If you’ve been visiting this blog for any length of time, you will have seen various photos of geese and gulls and ducks and squirrels and huge Cottonwood trees and fallen leaves and…other sundry things.

The park was established in 1883 and is on an 80-acre plot of land that used to be owned by Brigham Young.  It has a lake with two islands, seasonal amusement rides, tennis and basketball courts, a greenhouse, horse-shoe pits, and various picnic/barbecue areas with nearby playground equipment for the little ones.  Liberty Park is also home to the historic Isaac Chase Mill, the Tracy Aviary, and the Chase Home Museum of Utah Folk Arts.  If you’d like to read more about Liberty Park, please click on the highlighted name to follow a link to Wikipedia’s article.

My little one has wanted to ride the boats on Liberty Park’s pond for quite some time now.  He has visited the park multiple times over our nearly two years here in Salt Lake City, but those occasions were often on busy and crowded Saturday mornings or during seasons when the boats were not available.  I suppose I could say that my little one took to the canoe like ducks/geese take to water….  It was his first time in a canoe and he conducted himself like an old pro….

The Canada Geese (Canadian Geese?) are year-round visitors/residents of Liberty Park.  I have seen and heard them in every month of the year and have watched as their little ones follow them about the pond in Spring and early Summer.  I’ve never seen their nests out in the more public areas of the park, so I would guess that they are on this sunflower-adorned island.  The only way to reach this island is by boat, but I don’t think it’s an encouraged activity…and since people rent the boats for only 20 minutes per ride, I don’t know that too many of them would want to park the boats just to explore the little island.

The island looks like a perfect nesting ground for the geese and ducks, and maybe even the gulls that frequent the pond.

There was one canoe and three paddle-boats available…my little one went straight to the canoe.  After we grabbed a bite to eat at the concession stand, we went back out on a paddle-boat like the one in the below photo.  It might seem that there was a bit of traffic on the lake, but it wasn’t really too bad.  We had actually steered closer to the geese so I could attempt to get some close-up shots of them.

I’m not sure what type of bird/duck this one is…probably not an Egret…but it was the first time I have seen such a creature at the park.  After I got home and was processing the photographs, I couldn’t help but think that it looked like this guy was leading the other birds in song….  Ok…maybe not….

This is the bridge to the other island in Liberty Park’s pond.  The island has a large gazebo, planters/flower-beds, huge Cottonwood trees, and nice park benches.

When we had finished our paddle-boat ride (a bit after this last photo) and had walked less than 20 yards away from the dock, my little one asked when we would be able to come back and ride the boats again.  It was nice that he had such a good time.  The stuff of memories….

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39 responses

  1. Looks like some type of Cormorant (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cormorant_fishing).

    Looks like a nice place to spend a good amount of time at.

    August 22, 2012 at 7:13 am

    • Thank you for the info on the bird, Emilio…and yes, it’s a nice place to spend a good bit of time. I go there nearly every day on my lunch-time walks…quite a beautiful place.

      August 23, 2012 at 6:52 am

  2. What a great park! My first stop would be the greenhouse and then straight to the island that nobody ever goes to.

    August 22, 2012 at 7:23 am

    • I think you’d enjoy it, Allen…seems to be right up your alley. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 6:53 am

  3. Wonderful shots Scott… fun to see your little guy making such fantastic memories!! The Canadian geese look like they are having a grand time too 🙂 ~R

    August 22, 2012 at 9:25 am

    • Thank you, Robyn…he was quite thrilled to be there. And yes, those geese had a wonderful time, as well. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 6:55 am

  4. Looks like a smashing day out Scott. Great photos. 🙂

    August 22, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    • It was just that kind of day, Chillbrook…thank you. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 6:56 am

  5. Treasure your family days, they grow up so quickly.
    Love your picture story telling Scott, you make it live.

    August 22, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    • Thank you for your kind words, John…and yes, they do grow-up so quickly…and we find ourselves looking backward wondering how it happened so….

      August 23, 2012 at 6:57 am

  6. Lovely pictures Scott. I took my daughter out sea kayaking a ferw years ago and she absolutely loved it (and so did I!). There’s something magical about being on the water and seeing the water creatures up close in their element. (I think your black interloper is a species of cormorant – supreme fishermen)

    August 22, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    • Thank you, Finn…and your sea-kayaking sounds like quite an adventure…something to be greatly enjoyed! We’re considering purchasing a canoe so that we can be out on the water more often…closer to that magic…. And thank you for the ID on the Cormorant, also…seems to be the concensus vote. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:00 am

  7. Definitely a cormorant… I’m thinking the Double-crested variety. Others look quite similar, but the double-crested are the only ones to venture so far inland. http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Double-crested_Cormorant/id

    As for the day and the shots and the memories….. purely priceless!

    August 22, 2012 at 3:41 pm

    • Thank you for the ID, Miss Gunta…it’s nice having all of you nature-friends for friends here on the blog…always a great source of information. 🙂 And yes, a purely priceless day with my little one…thank you. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:02 am

      • Just happened to be out at the beach yesterday and tried to catch the birds in flight . I’ve noticed that a LOT of the birds fly out along the river jetties at the changing of the tide. The cormorants were the hardest to catch because they fly so fast. They looked like they were flying at least twice as fast as the gulls or other birds. Sort of like a Porsche compared to a VW. If you see them standing around with their wings spread to dry, then it’s a positive ID. They’re the only birds I know of that do that.

        August 23, 2012 at 2:39 pm

        • I like the comparison with the cars, Gunta. 🙂

          This was the first time I had seen the Cormorant at the pond, even visiting it as often as I do. I will have to keep an eye out for their drying activities…would be nice to capture those moments, too.

          August 24, 2012 at 7:11 am

  8. Great lake, love the photos of the geese. There are so many of them. I would say the look on his face in the last photo says it all really.

    August 22, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    • Thank you, Leanne…and you’re right…the look on his face in that last shot does say it all. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:03 am

  9. He’s holding the paddle like an old pro all right. You’d be surprised how many people don’t hold the top of the paddle correctly.

    August 22, 2012 at 7:24 pm

    • Hello Jomegat…yes, he seemed like he knew what he was doing out there. I almost expected him to kneel and paddle like the iconic Brave on the water. 🙂

      Thank you for visiting and for letting me know you were here. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:07 am

      • You’re welcome. Kneeling is a more stable position for the canoe, and is highly recommended when paddling through whitewater. It lowers the center of gravity, and allows you to correct the tilt in the boat with substantially less effort. The latter is because when you kneel, the knees are separated by about 18 inches (vs 8″ for butt cheeks on the seat). That gives you more leverage.

        August 23, 2012 at 11:39 am

        • All of that makes sense, Jomegat; thank you for the information. 🙂

          August 24, 2012 at 6:44 am

  10. Victoria

    Looks like a wonderful day out, Scott, and I enjoyed your photos very much.
    We have Black Cormorants, Pied Cormorants and Little Pied Cormorants here in Australian, but I believe your black Cormorant in the photo is a different species.
    I think Gunta is correct in his identification of it as Double crested Cormorant. It was mentioned in a post on the Photography forum I belong to also.

    August 22, 2012 at 10:46 pm

    • It was wonderful, Victoria…and I’m glad you enjoyed the photos. It was fun making and capturing the memories. 🙂

      Thank you for the info on the Cormorants, also…amazing how many of the “same” thing there can be out there, but in a slightly different form….

      August 23, 2012 at 7:09 am

  11. A beautiful post, and it left me with a feeling of happiness in my chest. The young man is very fortunate, and he looks as if he knows that.

    August 23, 2012 at 2:28 am

    • Thank you, Shimon…and how touching, that the post left you with such a feeling of happiness. What a beautiful comment….

      And yes, my little one was feeling very fortunate to be there…had a wonderful time. Thank you again, my friend. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:11 am

  12. Wonderful shots, Scott. Reminds me of the time I had a Canadian canoe and would go canoeing – the geese remind me of the Canada geese at the pond by my parent’s house! Thanks for posting. 🙂

    August 23, 2012 at 4:02 am

    • Thank you, Dreams and Zeros…sounds like wonderful memories. 🙂

      August 23, 2012 at 7:12 am

  13. A very lovely spot ~ indeed! Thanks for sharing, the pictures alone brought a touch of tranquility in my busy day. Blessings – Patty

    August 23, 2012 at 9:00 am

    • Tranquility is a wonderful thing to have, especially on a very busy day…I’m glad you enjoyed the series, Patty…thank you. 🙂

      August 24, 2012 at 6:45 am

  14. Your son is lucky to have a father who is nurturing a love and curiosity for the natural world.

    August 23, 2012 at 11:19 am

    • And I feel fortunate that he has a desire to be there with me…. Thank you, James, for being here, and for your very nice words.

      August 24, 2012 at 6:46 am

      • Well said. My pleasure, Scott.

        August 24, 2012 at 10:16 am

        • Thank you, again, James.

          August 26, 2012 at 7:06 am

  15. Ah, Scott, there is nothing in this world like sharing experiences that we love with those who are most dear to us. I love the expression of joy on your little one’s face, and this is an experience that he will treasure for many years to come, thanks to your passion and devotion to photography and family. Our daughters are now much older, but I remember very well our first canoe excursions, which endeared them to the art from the very start. Well done!

    August 23, 2012 at 9:07 pm

    • It is certainly a treasure, Gary…something that I cherish already as an experience and as a memory. It’s wonderful that you have similar memories with your daughters. Thank you for such a nice comment, my friend….

      August 24, 2012 at 6:50 am

  16. A delightful post, Scott. I smiled all the way through seeing and reading about what a wonderful day it was. Thank you for sharing this with us.

    August 24, 2012 at 8:43 am

    • What a beautiful comment, Melanie…thank you. 🙂

      August 26, 2012 at 7:05 am

  17. Oddly enough, I have never been IN Liberty Park. I drove by it numerous times and thought about going in, but since I didn’t live in SLC, I was always heading in other directions when I visited. Looks like a great little big park!

    September 1, 2012 at 7:25 am

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