Saturday, May 2, 2015

Dogwood Canyon - Lampe, MO - 4/15/2915

If your goal is to see Dogwood trees, what better place to go than Dogwood Canyon?  You also get loads of Redbuds, waterfalls, golden trout, deer, elk, longhorn cattle, and bison as a bonus.  All this beauty from the comfort of a tram.  Well, comfort might not be the right word.  The trail gets pretty rough at the water crossings.

While Dogwood Canyon (DWC) is in Lampe, MO, it is really one of the attractions to see on a Branson, MO trip.  Lampe is only a 20-30 minute drive from Branson.  DWC is another Johnny Morris development along with Big Cedar, Top of the Rock, Buffalo Ridge Golf, and all the Bass Pro Shops.  DWC is currently being upgraded with new construction for ticketing, gift shops, and dining buildings.  The whole DWC area is unique in the way it was developed and in the type of natural beauty it is blessed with for starters.

Johnny grew up in this area and was a spelunker who explored the many caves in this part of the Ozarks.  His love of the area shows in all his developments.

In addition to the tram ride we took, you can rent bicycles and Segways. You can walk all the trails except the parts that hold the wild animals.  The streams are stocked with trout so fishing is also a major feature of the park.  Training on fly fishing can be arranged.

The tram trail is paved although it does get rough by design at some of the water crossings.

The wedding chapel has two buildings.....the chapel and the brides dressing area.

Pink Dogwoods are far less common than the whites ones.

Nothing like a natural waterfall as a backdrop for wedding photos.

Did I mention that there are lots of waterfalls in the Canyon.

Edel and Sigrid explored the source of this waterfall.

We are now entering the wildlife part of the DWC.  We actually left Missouri and are in Arkansas by about a mile.  Our tram driver explained the antler process for the elk in the park.  Elk completely shed their antlers every year and grow new ones in the spring.

Whitetailed Deer.

The bison are all lined up eating the corn that our tram driver spread on the ground to attract them to us for photos and an up close experience.

These are all wild and dangerous animals.  The tram driver is very careful to only leave the cab of the truck when it is safe and he never turns his back on the animals.

The elk are in transition from winter coats to warm weather fur.

The Texas Long Horns are spectacular.  

This bull elk is still growing this year's antlers.  Antlers grow as much as an inch per day and are covered with velvet skin that has to be rubbed off by the elk.

Returning to Missouri.

Mission accomplished as far as flowering trees are concerned.  Now we are off to Bentonville to take in some fine art and architecture at the Crystal Bridges Art Museum.

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