Tag Archives: woods

Note to Self

Note to self and others…

If you go out wandering around in the early spring…

And you find the skull of a year old buck with the antlers, some hair and meat still attached…

And you decide to take it home to salvage the antlers…

More than likely you’ll toss it in the trunk of your car to bring it home.

Then, you decide you’ll cut the antlers off the next day and you leave the skull in your trunk.

You don’t want to do that…

I guarantee you will not like what you find crawling around in your trunk 24 hours later…

A Walk in the Woods and the Water

With a weekend where both days were at 80 degrees, a walk in the woods and the water seemed to be called for. Spring days like this should be taken advantage of.

On March 12th I had waded down to the mouth of a creek and on the point where the creek meets the river was a nesting goose. That’s the blurry shot at the top of this post. I thought this was far too early, but what do I know about geese. I do know I haven’t seen another one on a nest till a couple of days ago.

Saturday I thought I’d go check out the goose. I had made the decision to fish my way down to the point, but the fishing got boring and I decided to just stroll. Off in the distance I could see a goose in the water below the point and swimming around it were little yellow objects. As I got closer they all jumped up on the point and when I got to the point, all I could see was a goose head and neck sticking out above the brush keeping an eye on me. I’m sure the gosslings were tucked up under the goose.

Turning around, I became very aware that I was being watched. This one was giving no ground and I gave it some distance out of respect. Those that have followed this blog along for a few years have probably seen the stories about my run ins with nesting geese in the past.

I had no interest in reliving those moments.

I wandered along a shore and took a gratuitous shot down the river on a nice day.

As I started to wander down the shore again, I heard a low hiss. I immediately stopped in my tracks. My previous run ins with geese have burned that hiss into my memory. I stopped a few feet shy of stepping on this.

I’ve seen that look before too. I didn’t have much time to get out of the way before all hell broke loose.

Sunday I decided to go wander a big flood plain on a small creek to see if the Virginia Bluebells and other wildflowers were in bloom. If you like to wander around in the woods and you know a place where the Virginia Bluebells cover the forest floor like a carpet for as far as you can see, next weekend should be perfect.

Today there were a few blooming, but most were still thinking about it. An unknown little white flower was less shy.

And no, I won’t tell you my spot. As far as I can tell I’m the only one that goes there. For well over a decade, I’ve never come across another foot print and I like it that way.

On the way out I walked along the base of a steep hill, I guess you could call this a bluff, it’s that steep. Flowers on the hill caught my eye. I’ve never noticed this before, but there’s a good chance I’ve never walked along the bottom of this hill in the spring before. I’ve never seen these anywhere else and they were only growing on this steep slope.

I have no clue what they are and don’t have a clue on how to even start searching for what these might be. I’m hoping somebody that sees this (ahem, Walt Franklin) will know right off the top of their heads.

I’ll be back here next week and expect to see the bluebells in full bloom. That weekend I’ll also be making my first foraging foray for wild asparagus. If time allows, I’ll also be checking out a potential treasure trove of fungi, morels and chicken of the woods.

Funny to me, I have your typical full time job and with commuting and working, I’m gone twelve hours of the day. If I were to retire tomorrow, this time of year my wife still wouldn’t get to see me for twelve hours a day.

I’m sure I would be out wandering around somewhere.

Every day.

Thanksgiving Weekend in Missouri

Spent the long Thanksgiving weekend at my father-in-laws house 20 miles east of Branson Missouri. That’s the same as saying out in the middle of nowhere.

I had planned on driving around, which I did, taking pictures, which I didn’t.

The reason is that there are no straight roads in that part of Missouri. There are no flat stretches of road either. Taking pictures while driving was out of the question unless I wanted to drive off a cliff. Pulling over was also out of the question, the side roads with the best views had no shoulders.

What few pictures taken were all taken while wandering down the hill behind the house. We were tracking deer and following what started out to be a little trickle of water that runs past the house.

Mid day view from the house.

My father-in-law owns about 5 acres, but as far as I could tell, his nearest neighbor out his backyard was about three quarters of a mile away. No clue who owns all the land in between.

Out of the rocks, springs would flow.

The view down the hill.

Each spring made the creek a bit bigger.

And a bit bigger.

The woods are made up mainly of red cedar trees, this one was the biggest and oldest. The trunk was easily 3 feet in diameter.

My brother-in-law giving a waterfall some sense of scale.

That same waterfall. There's another, bigger one further down, but we never made it.

Why we never made it further down.

Even when you could see the sun light, it seemed much darker in these little canyons.

Chances are, out here, it will be number 3.

The view from the yard at sunset.

I’ve been to Missouri twice in the past. I’ve always noticed that there is something odd about the sky and how the clouds relate to their surroundings. Not sure how to describe it, but if you do a search on the paintings of Thomas Hart Benton, you’ll see I’m not the only one that noticed this.

Check this out, you’ll see what I mean.

Thomas Hart Benton

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