The Army Corps of Engineers runs this park and you can tell because it's underwater. Just kidding, Army Corps of Engineers! (A little flood joke — the park is not underwater.) No, you can tell the Corps runs it because things are well done. The boardwalks are just a little nicer than they need to be — boards are cut to overlap at a 45-degree angle instead of just butting into each other. The 90-degree turn has the inside corner cut wide so that you can turn a stroller or a wheelchair with ease. And the paths are well mulched.
There are plenty of benches and the benches are even well marked on the park map.
And let me say that this park is gorgeous. The way the boardwalks work, you feel like you're really seeing how the river fits into the land — you're walking over washes and through areas that are clearly wet part of the year. We saw deer tracks and the pond looks like a great place to spot birds at dawn or dusk.the website promised a "pungent odor" on the Willow Swamp Loop, and everything smelled just fine. It smelled like a woods in autumn. So I don't know if the pungent odor is only at certain times of year, or if it's some kind of ghost scent that attaches itself to Corps people with some terrible secret or something. But I was sad to miss it.
There was, however, a pungent odor coming from the bathroom. Ugh. People, even if the door is open, if the sign says "closed" then apparently what the Corps means is that there's no running water. That's really, really not pleasant. And, of course, since you're way out in the middle of nowhere, it's not like just driving to the nearest gas station or McDonald's is an option. So be sure, if you're going this time of year, to go to the bathroom before you get there.
But I would highly recommend this park to anyone who likes woodsy outdoor places. If you're in good shape, this isn't going to be a very challenging park. I'm not in good shape. I have asthma and a bum ankle, and when we finished, I was like, "Oh, that's it?" This would be a very easy park to do with someone who can walk, but maybe not far — grandparents and grandbabies would really enjoy this. Or if you have a very old dog, this is a park he or she can easily manage. And it will, apparently, wear them out enough that they will sleep for the rest of the day.
All around, this was a lovely surprise of a park. I highly recommend it.