25 Must See Things on Block Island in the Fall

Wed, 06/01/2016 - 3:00pm


Here are 25 natural wonders (in no specific order) to see in on Block Island in the Fall. How many have you seen?


1)    North Blazing Star – Block Island is the only place this state-endangered species is found in Rhode Island.  This purple wildflower is best seen at Turnip Farm. 


2)    Hodge Family Wildlife Preserve – This spectacular preserve has views of Middle Pond, Block Island Sound, North Light, Sandy Point, and Sachem Pond.  It is a must see for anyone who visits the Island.


3)    Maryland Golden Aster – Block Island is the only place in New England this state-endangered plant is found.  It has yellow blooms in the fall and can be seen at Lewis Dickens Farm.   


4)    Lewis Dickens Farm – Journey back to the way the Island used to look with rolling hills and stone walls.  The views of Montauk and the Atlantic Ocean are amazing too. 


5)    Monarch Butterflies – This large orange and black butterfly migrates through Block Island in the fall on their way to Mexico for the first time.  Sometimes we get a fallout of them where they cover the trees or bushes in an area. 


6)    Clay Head Preserve – The two-mile bluff walk is the most spectacular trail on the Island.  If you choose one of the many side trails you are in the 10-mile maze of trails which are marvelous to explore too. 


7)    Arrowwood – this Viburnum species has blue fruit in September and October.  It is the most important fruit for migratory songbirds that are migrating through.  The fruit has a high a high lipid count and anti-oxidant properties important during this birds’ long journey.    


8)    Common Green Darner – This is the largest of the dragonflys that are mostly green with a little blue right before the abdomen.  After spending the summer here, they start their migration south to the mid-Atlantic states.  They store their fat (energy) for the journey on their translucent wings giving them an amber appearance. 


9)    Spotted Turtle – The most elusive of the freshwater turtles to find. They can have up to 100 yellow or orange spots. 


10) Sandy Point – The tip of the island is worth the walk.  The raw natural beauty of this area is breathtaking.   


11) Ocean View Foundation Pavilion – This oasis from the hustle and bustle of town is a great spot to take in nature and nurture the soul while watching the world go by. 


12) Rodman’s Hollow/Black Rock – This is the largest conservation area on the Island with sweeping views of the fields, shore and ocean.  This is the birthplace of the conservation movement in 1972. 


13) Sunrises from Mansion Beach – It is a commitment to get up for the sunrise but you will be rewarded by watching the sun come out of the ocean from one of the most beautiful places to start a new day.


14) Circumnavigating the island via its beaches – The 17-mile trek from the Coast Guard Station to Beane Point is worth the walk to gain a new perspective on the Island while experiencing areas that few people visit.  


15)  Confusing Fall Warblers – in the fall there are over 30 species of warbler all drab yellow in color that migrate through Block Island on their way south.  Even for the most accomplished ornithologist they can be difficult to tell apart.  They are beautiful in their mysteriousness.   


16) Mohegan Bluffs – Called the terminal moraine, this is where the glaciers stopped. While always eroding it is awesome in its natural beauty with the Southeast light to the east, the newly constructed wind turbines to the south and Montauk to the west.


17) Rhinoceros Beetle – Block Island is the only place these large scarab beetles (about an inch) are found in the state.  The males have a horn (hence the Rhino names) and females don’t.  


18) Andy’s Way –The largest un-ditched salt marsh left in the state, Andy’s Way is an important feeding area to shore and wading birds while harboring amazing fish diversity.  Salt marshes are the most threatened habitat (from sea level rise) in the region. 


19) Block Island Meadow Vole – This vole is a sub-species (longer snout and shorter tail) that is only found on Block Island in meadows.  It is brown above and gray below and is bigger than a mouse and smaller than a rat. 


20) Nathan Mott Park – The first conservation area preserved in 1941, the park has a variety of different habitats including vernal pond, morainal grassland, shrubland, and meadow.  Be sure to walk to the top of the hill for the view of town and beyond.  It is one of the highest spots on the Island.


21) Sunsets from Charleston Beach – sunsets on Block Island are always specials.  Sunsets from Charleston Beach are magical watching the sun disappear into the water. 


22) Surf Casting – Striped bass and blue fish are running this time of year and it possible to catch a fish from any beach on the island.    


23) Sachem Pond – This brackish pond is a haven for all types of wildlife and offers vistas that can’t be match.  


24) Barn Owl – This state-endangered raptor can often be seen flying over meadows at dusk.  Black Rock, Clay head and Dickens Farm are the best spots to see this spectacular species.


25) Fresh Pond – The largest freshwater pond, it has amazing water clarity allowing you to see straight to the bottom even in the deepest areas.