Another beautiful morning in Hot Springs, and the Hot weather seems to be keeping people away from the park. When I enter the park I notice that the warmer the weather has many of the small mammals hiding in cool areas. On the Tufa Terrace I can see shadows on the fringes of the green and only one Squirrel sits quietly having breakfast in the twilight.
On the Carriage Road Japanese Honeysuckle is blooming and winding it’s way along the edges of the path. Near the Honeysuckle I notice a newly blooming Tree, it is covered in tiny pink spiny flowers. On the Dead Chief the sun is rising and the blue gray of twilight is lifting. As I reach the Short Cut Trail the sun is brushing the tops of the Trees lighting the before in front me. A light breeze is dancing through the Trees causing the leaves to twinkle above me.
When I reach the top of the Mountain a small Squirrel is sitting in the shade nibbling on a nut, above another is looking on as I hike past. I decide to take the Peak Trail down the Mountain and discover a patch of purple and white Heal-All Wildflowers. Their beautiful flowers remind me of miniature orchids. As I reach the junction of the Peak and Honeysuckle Trails a brown Moth lands graceful on a leaf to my side. It pumps it’s wings before flying deep into the forest.
I need to visit the Post Office and Bank and decide to take the Promenade to Spring Street. The Wild Roses are in full bloom and several Bumble Bees are gathering the pollen on their legs. Small birds are flying back and forth from the hospital wall to the many Trees on the Promenade. As I raise my camera to take a photo a tiny sparrow gives me a direct look and flies away. I hear chirping and turn to see a leucistic Sparrow feeding it’s chick. Leucistic is a condition characterized by reduced pigmentation in animals and humans. Unlike albinism, it is caused by a reduction in all types of skin pigment, not just melanin. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leucism) The sparrow appears to be a pale yellow color rather than brown like her baby. Nature is an amazing teacher.
Above me a glorious moon rise in visible against a gorgeous “Arkansas Blue” sky, a perfect sight for this Moon Girl. As I exit the park I spot the last Purple Iris in the garden at the bottom of the steps and notice it’s blossom is waning. I take a final photo of this bearded beauty before exiting the park.
Thank You for traveling with me on the Trails today.
Love to You ALL!