Exploring Nature One Step At A Time

Archive for July 9, 2010

Beautiful Fungi, Friends and Trails In The Summer Showers

Tufa Terrace Trail Chipmunk Breakfast

Lower Dogwood Trail

Promenade Blue Butterfly

Lower Dogwood Trail Fungi Log

Dim with patches of sun and pouring rain, it is a perfect day for a hike.  As I reach the top of the Tufa Terrace entrance I am greeted by a lovely Chipmunk having it’s breakfast. It is a heart warming sight and a happy start to my hike. As a brief moment of sun appears I can see  the Moths on the Peak Trail Tree are sill battling the Yellow Jackets.  A pretty Sycamore Tussock Moth is inching it’s way up the the Tree past the activity.

The Rain is back as I reach the Carriage Road and I spot a tiny Chipmunk.  It is making a dash to get out of the sudden downpour.  The sweetie dives into a burrow hole and them pops it’s head out to see if the rain has stopped. As the rain continues I hike up the Dead Chief  and Short Cut Trails to reach the Mountain top.  The skies are darkening  as rain increases and a flock of Tufted Titmouse fly into the pines above me.   As I move through the picnic area a Blue Jay lands in a Tree nearby.

When I reach the Pagoda the clouds above the valley are darkening as rain continues.  I decide to continue my hike along the Hot Springs Mountain Trail in the lush new green.  It is a peaceful hike listening to the drops of rain hitting the leaves.  The occasional large drop bouncing up off the path like tiny missiles striking the earth and gravel. I am surprised to find a Fungus the size of a “ladies” bicycle seat growing between the ferns.  It is a spectacular apricot color.

I connect with the Upper Dogwood Trail as the Rain lets up a little.  Further up the trail I spot a log covered in False Turkey Tail Fungi. I love how weather conditions change the colors with the help of algae.  The trail is quiet as I hike in the Forest, a squirrel moves in the Tree above me cause a cascade of water for the leaves above. I connect with the Lower Dogwood Trail and hike down the Floral Trail to the Hot Springs Mountain Road to Fountain Street.

I head up the Promenade and encounter a beautiful dark blue and turquoise Butterfly.  It is spectacular as it turns and gently opens and closes it wings.  A light rain begins to fall and the Butterfly gracefully flies away.  As I make my way out of the park a Male Cardinal lands in a Tree ahead of me.  He is a glorious red and I feel blessed to end my hike with this beautiful sighting.

Get out and play, dance in the wind and roll in the grass.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 436 other followers