Sunday, June 8, 2014

Southville State Forest - Part 1

My sister had been planning a springtime visit but my mention of black fly season seemed to dampen her enthusiasm. So I decided to take the dogs to a nearby forest for a short walk in order to evaluate the severity of the black fly explosion. We arrived at the Southville State Forest and began our walk:

To my surprise, there were no black flies and only one deer fly during the entire hike. There were some mosquitoes, but just a normal amount. So we proceeded happily down the trail, enjoying the scenery:

The trails are really wood roads and are therefore quite easy walking. This one took us into a forest of Red Pine:

Seamus and Fergus had new haircuts and Seamus had lost weight, so this hike was going especially well:

I detoured off the trail and into the Red Pines. The walking was easy as there was almost no underbrush:

The forest floor was almost pure sand and littered with the trunks of Red Pines which had not made it to maturity, as well as lichens and mosses:

I began looking for spring wildflowers but wasn't finding any:

Fergus was being a very good boy and tried to stay close to me, a true change from his former ways:

And then I came upon my first Pink Ladyslipper orchid of the year, and it was truly beautiful:

We'd been off the trail for some time and I began to think we'd better find it again, so we headed in that direction. The forest had a magical look to it which reminded me of old View-Master scenes of Little Red Riding Hood:

Our trail was just ahead, through those Beech trees:

I stopped momentarily to photograph some Partridgeberries, and then we continued on our way. But I'll post tomorrow about the next leg of the hike:

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