Exploring Nature One Step At A Time

A Race Across the Park for Eight Points

Upper Dogwood Trail Deer 8 Point Buck

Upper Dogwood Trail Deer 8 Point Buck

Upper Dogwood Trail Deer 8 Point Buck

Tufa Terrace Trail Banded Net Wing Beetle

Short Cut Trail Orange Brown Moth

The temperature is already 86 when I get up at 6:20 a.m., so I am rushing to get out by 7:25 a.m. to hike before it gets much hotter.  My plan is for a quick hike up Hot Springs Mountain and back down.  A jogger passes me as I head up the stairs into the park.  When I reach the Promenade a small group of people is approaching and we take different paths up the Mountain.

When I reach the junction of the Tufa and Peak Trails I see and unusual insect.  Special thanks to @PineLilyFNPS on Twitter for identifying this as a Banded Net Wing Beetle.  As I reach the Carriage Road the Bird song is amazing, you can listen if you click here. Close your eyes and be transported into the Forest. Moving slowly along the path I watch as a Mourning Dove lands in the Tree above me, but does not stay long.

I hike up the Dead Chief and Short Cut Trails at a record pace, the heat increasing with each segment of the inclines. When I reach the top of Hot Springs Mountain I stop to drink some water, the sweat is poring down my face.  I stand wondering which way I should travel to continue my journey.  I decide to take the Hot Springs Mountain Trail on the west side of the mountain.  As I head down the trail I meet Bobby (Husband of Liz) he tells me there are  many deer on the North side of North Mountain resting in the shade. The group includes both a  twelve and eight point Buck.

I of course speed hike the 2.5 miles over to the location Bobby specified on the Upper Dogwood Trail.   I arrive in time to view an eight point Buck strolling deeper into the forest. It is an amazing sight.  As I am hiking away I have a conversation with two older gentlemen and they indicate they have seen the deer resting near where I am.  Tomorrow I will have an early hike onto North Mountain hopefully for a glimpse of the deer herd.

I head home along the Lower Dogwood Trail and then down the Floral Trail to the leave the park.  A beautiful blue Butterfly lands causing a brown and tan Moth to move further away. I always love the sun on the wings of these glorious residents of the park.  It has been another wonderful way too hot morning in the park.

Please take a break and commune with Nature.

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2 responses

  1. bobby witherington

    enjoyed the pictures of the deer—really exciting photos—once in a life time opportunity. no deer spotted today.

    July 23, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    • Thank You for the tip Bobby, I nearly ran to the Upper Dogwood and was lucky to the the eight point buck as he disappeared into the Forest. I remember your wife Liz was looking for wildflowers when I met her :) she like I must miss them and will have to wait till next spring.
      Kindest Thoughts and Wishes,

      July 24, 2010 at 8:35 am

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