Today was the Saturday for the November hike for our trail club. Loren and Ellen were both busy, so I wasn't sure if I'd have company. But three others came, and we had a great time. The weather was mild, although not sunny, but pleasant. (Vicky, Joan, John, Patty)
Along the way, we did a little trail work. Nothing major! There were a few small trees down. This one was still attached and couldn't just be broken, and I had a small folding saw. Here, Vicky takes a turn with the project.
I was amazed at how different the section looked with all the leaves down. Maybe I've never hiked that piece in late fall before. I noticed several valleys, two potential camping spaces, and a cattail wetland behind a hemlock swamp that I hadn't seen before. How could I have missed that?
Well, we also saw a couple of treats. Here's a sweet little clump of mushrooms. I have no idea what they are, other than cute.
We almost missed the prettiest find because we were looking so much at the ground. Two late witch hazel trees were in full bloom. Did you know that "witch" has nothing to do with magical women? It's a corruption of "wych" from Old English "wiche," which means "bendable." The wood is very flexible.
And yes, the astringent Witch Hazel is made from an extract of the bark and leaves.
This is the same piece of trail I walked with Maggie in September, and I've hiked it many times, but today it felt like a completely new place. I hadn't ever been so aware of the topography, and that it really has quite a few small hills. We didn't find any open water among the cattails, but I'll bet it has some in the spring. I'll have to look again.
We did have to tinker with the pump a little more this afternoon, but got the water going again without much trouble.
|See Strolling with Maggie|
|if you like this blog, click the +1 |