I was hoping to participate in Karma’s February Photo Hunt with all new photos, but have had to resort to the archives for a couple. The first one (flake) was easy as Mother Nature provided us with a lot of flakes yesterday. The snowflakes were so big that they almost look like coconut flakes falling from the sky. Cornflakes and/or coconut flakes were going to be my back-ups if we didn’t get some snow. The other possibility was too insulting to consider. Besides, I don’t know any flakes (other than my occasional forays into flakiness).
The joy of all mysteries is the certainty which comes from their contemplation, that there are many doors yet for the soul to open on her upward and inward way.
~ Arthur Christopher Benson
*Post title courtesy of my search engine terms. When I can’t think of a good title, I can usually count on finding something good in the search engine terms that bring people to visit Life in the Bogs.
It’s another gorgeous, sunny, blue-sky day here in the Bogs. It’s colder than it has been for the past few days. Around 35 degrees instead of 60. The wind is a-whipping, too. It spent most of the night making things shake, rattle, moan, creak, and whistle. I know because it was another relatively sleepless night for me. I hope this is not the start of an insomnia pattern.
M and I decided to go for a short hike on the portion of the Buckeye Trail that is just a few miles down the road from us. It’s a relatively sheltered area, the trees blocking the worst of the wind.
The thaw has worked on most of the trail but there were areas deep into the woods that were still mostly snow covered. Another side-effect of the thaw was water. There is one section of the trail covered with a goodly amount of water and we had to detour around it. That’s pretty common in the spring and during a winter thaw.
I was surprised by the number of trees that have fallen since the last time we explored the trail. One area looks almost as though a tornado swept through, large trees piled on top of each other, some completely uprooted.
I took some photos of the piles of trees but it’s one of those instances where it’s hard to get a true idea of the size and scope of things. None were worth posting.
We found this very sizable wing along the trail back in the woods. I’m not sure what type of bird it’s from although the size makes me think it was a hawk. If any of you birders out there can identify it for me, I’d appreciate it.
It was a lively walk, meeting our objectives to get outside, enjoy the day, and get our heart rates up. It’s a trail we’ve hiked many times, yet it seems different every time we’re out there.
We met a man with a dog along the way. The dog looked like one of those types that is supposed to be mean, but it was a real sweetie (or “cupcake” as the man said).
Long-time visitors to my blog might recognize this bridge. It showed up here once as “the haunted bridge.” Of course it’s not really haunted. But it is a bridge I don’t care to cross because it’s been falling apart for years. The railings that used to be along the sides have now completely fallen off or been pushed off by vandals. I suspect it’s the former. It wouldn’t have taken much wind to knock them over. M keeps insisting that it’s solid, and he’s probably right. We haven’t fallen into the creek yet.
After our hike we drove over to look at the reservoir. Some of the Buckeye Trail we were on runs along the reservoir, but there are no clear views of it. Sometimes there are folks ice fishing out on the reservoir. With the thaw, I figured that would be pretty unlikely today. I was right. I did watch a large flock of geese come in for a landing. They were too far away for the photo to turn out well (I tried).
It’s Day 9 of my 10-day yoga challenge. I was not up at 6am but did do about 20 minutes of yoga this morning. I plan to continue beyond day 10.
Today’s music: We’re listening to Mountain Stage. When M and I lived in southern Ohio (where Ohio, West Virginia, and Kentucky meet), we used to occasionally go to Charleston, West Virginia to attend one of the live broadcasts. It was always fun and enjoyable.
(141: Going deeper into the woods.)
Then away out in the woods I heard that kind of a sound that a ghost makes when it wants to tell about something that’s on its mind and can’t make itself understood, and so can’t rest easy in its grave, and has to go about that way every night grieving.
~ Mark Twain, from The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
I may be about finished with this theme unless some serious inspiration hits very soon because, as you can see, I am really stretching it now.
(140: The bridge. Photo © 2009 by Robin)
Last weekend M and I went for a short hike along the part of the Buckeye Trail that is near where we live. The trail looked as though it hasn’t been used for a while, overgrown in some sections and trees down in others.
There is a bridge on the main trail that crosses a small creek. It is not, as far as I know, a haunted bridge but it is, to me, a scary bridge.
In the years that we’ve been hiking this trail, the bridge has been slowly deteriorating. Not that it was in great shape the first time we crossed it, but at least the railings were still standing and the wooden slats felt as if they could hold some weight. Now when we cross it I hold my breath and go across very quickly, hoping that none of the slats crack and/or break.
It wouldn’t be a long fall and the creek doesn’t look that deep. Still, it presents an opportunity for injury. I wonder how the guy who mows the trail (when it gets mowed) feels about driving over the bridge. We might find the mower parked in the creek one day.
In other news…
(Admiring the sky. All photos © 2009 by Robin)
At long last, the month of February has come to an end. March brings with it the hope of spring even though we know full well that winter isn’t finished with us. There are buds on the lilac bushes. The crocuses are pushing up through the dirt. And never mind that these things began to happen at the end of February. They belong to March and that hope of warmer and greener things to come.
I don’t know what it is that makes February such a long month. It certainly isn’t the number of days. Whatever the cause, and as much as I dislike rushing my life by wishing a month of it away, I’m glad it’s over for another year.
(On the Buckeye Trail.)
As an unplanned celebration of the turning of the calendar page, M and I went for a hike along a nearby lake (on part of the Buckeye Trail) this morning. The sky was that brilliant, crisp, cold, shade of blue that I think of as March Blue. It almost matches the color of the ice on the lakes.
(Blue above and below.)
As you might be able to guess from the photos, it is a cold 1st of March. The winds today are whipping, 16mph sustained, gusts up to 25 mph. The actual temperature was somewhere around 23°F. The place we chose for hiking is fairly sheltered from the wind so it wasn’t too bad. Thermal underwear helps, too.
We were able to hike a part of the Buckeye Trail that we generally avoid during the spring months because most of it is under water, part of the vernal pool system in this area. (For more information on Ohio vernal pools, visit the Ohio Vernal Pool Partnership.) In fact, that part of the trail is posted, no horse riding allowed during the spring months. Horses really churn up the trail when it’s wet and muddy.
(Sun and shadow on the trail.)
The trail was frozen and crunchy. It was a little like walking on a very shallow creek, occasionally breaking through the ice onto frozen mud.
(Lintel over the path.)
There were a lot of trees down. The past year has blown a lot of strong winds through the Bogs, including the remnants of Hurricane Ike. At one point on the trail we saw what looked like a domino effect, six trees in a row all toppled across the trail. I suspect they’re going to have to reroute the trail. It looks like too much for volunteers to come in and clear up.
It was a nice, invigorating hike. I’m glad we decided to go. There’s a lot to be said for spontaneity.
We drove over to the other side of the lake after our hike. A few brave souls were out on the ice, fishing.
They had to be freezing out there where there was nothing to block the full force of the wind. I hope they caught a few fish to make it worth their while.