The forecast is for Rain accented with Thunder and Lightning, the dark sky is an indication this is likely correct. I decide a quick up and back hike on Hot Springs Mountain would be the safest idea. The park mammals are not visible and appear to have taken cover for the impending storm. The birds however are all singing their best rain songs from the Trees in the lower park trails.
On the Carriage Road two male Cardinals are fighting for position to sing in a sheltered Tree. The loser moves to an evergreen and begins to broadcast his message concerning the changing weather. His red feathers look glorious against the green Tree and gray cloudy sky. A large group arrives with portable music to take family photographs, so it’s onward and upward for me.
I begin my hike up the Dead Chief Trail but change my mind quickly. As I reach the the top of the first incline I hear the music coming closer and look back to see ten people coming up the Mountain. I head down the Hot Springs Mountain Road and cut over to the Peak Trail.
The hike up the Peak Trail is a song fest as the birds of the Forest all announce the impending storm. The air is heavy with humidity and the insects are a bit pesky as I head to the top. The melody in the air is sweet so I can forgive a few annoying insects. The sky is getting darker and I am wondering if I will get back before the rain arrives.
As I reach the top of the trail I am greeted by another male Cardinal. He sits in the Tree across from me, he looks down and then cocks his head to peer up through the leaves at the sky. Does he know something I don’t? I decide to start my decent on the Hot Springs Mountain Trail. A sweet little Sparrow appears to see me on my way.
As the sky darkens I pick up my pace and decide as much as I Love Nature and Her beauty getting off the Mountain should be my first priority. I connect with the Honeysuckle and then the Floral Trail to the Hot Springs Mountain Road. It is now darker than when I began my hike over an hour ago and I am happy to see home n the distance. Fifteen minutes after I arrive home the Rain begins, followed by Thunder and Lightning. Nature can be fierce, I respect Her power.
Love to you ALL!