Field Notes: January 17th 2011
A lovely layer of fog and mist as fallen over Hot Springs National Park this morning. It is a perfect morning to go hiking in the life giving moisture. The plants are all coated with exquisite glistening spheres softly glowing in the dim light. It is one those rare occasions when the fog is coming down the Mountain to meet me on the trails. I have in the past raced up and down three Mountains in a single morning trying to catch a patch of fog. The bad news, half way up Hot Springs Mountain I realized I had left home without my spare batteries and camera bag. I thought I was feeling a bit lighter 🙂
Along the foggy Short Cut Trail beautiful ghost like creatures appear in the leaves and up in Trees. A female Cardinal and a Sparrow are foraging ahead of me while a male Red-Bellied Woodpecker is pecking on a branch in the distance. When I reach the top of the trail there is a faint rainbow in the mist and fog as I cross the Hot Springs Mountain Road. I love how the familiar trails take on a mysterious atmosphere of uncertainty.
The rain is increasing and the fog is on the move from the Hot Springs Mountain Trail to the bottom of the Floral Trail. I hike with swift intent as mentioned earlier I don’t have my camera bag to pack my camera away to keep it dry. When I reach the bottom and begin to head home on Fountain Street the sky darkens and the street lamps begin glowing in the gray ahead of me. I feel like I am entering the old TV show dark Shadows, all that is missing is a Vampire. As the old street lamps illuminated the sidewalk I am greeted by… not a Vampire, but a Squirrel enjoying a late breakfast in the fog.