Posted on September 23, 2018
In central Ohio it’s not quite autumn but with daylight too quickly losing the battle to the setting sun it would be hard, even on a warm day, to mistake it for summer. Plants, animals, insects, weather, and daylight are all in all in a state of flux. It’s as though we’re passing through on our way to somewhere else, to a place that’s easier to put a label on. It’s hard to bring oneself to the realization that present forms of life are dying but such an awareness is inescapable as one walks through the woods. It is a season of paradox as late summer and fall wildflowers arrive doing their best to announce the autumnal fireworks to follow.
Caterpillars active just a few weeks ago have disappeared in preparation to reintroduce themselves next year in a new perhaps more beautiful form. Highlighted by the early morning dew, spider webs are everywhere often to the detriment of passing grasshoppers which seem more plentiful now. Other insects continue to make their daily rounds without the urgency of the squirrels which all seem to have a nut in their mouth. An occasional migrating warbler is seen making its way south while blue jays and crows are noticed more often just passing through while others have undoubtedly taken up residence for the winter.
Unlike summer, with days that change little from one to the next, it’s a time of year that assigns value to what we have and blesses us with a feeling of gratitude for what soon will be lost.
Thanks for stopping by.
Category: Central Ohio Nature, Central Ohio Parks, Columbus, Nature Photography, Prairie Oaks Metro Park, Wildflowers Tagged: Banded Garden Spider, Bay Breasted Warbler, Goldenrod, Killdeer, Monarch Butterfly, Morning Glory, New England Aster, Nodding-bur Marigold, Question Mark, Tree Swallow, Viceroy, Violet, Widow Skimmer
Posted on September 20, 2016
Every once in awhile we head off with friends to do some hiking. This year it was Acadia National Park in Maine. While there, our base of operation was Moseley Cottage Inn & Town Motel in Bar Harbor located easy walking distance to shops, restaurants and the harbor. We used the excellent free (donation requested) shuttle bus service to get around the island and access the trails.
September is a great time to visit the coast of Maine with clearer cooler days and little fog. This is particularly important when hiking the rocky hills of Acadia which offer many unobstructed views of Frenchman’s Bay and the surrounding area.
The first thing that impresses one is the rock. It’s some of the very oldest on the planet. It’s weathered surface, in various forms, having stood exposed to the elements since the last ice age, is everywhere. In fact the last ice age is why the area with it’s barren hills, deep clear lakes, islands, and rugged coastline looks the way it does.
Hiking on the Maine Coast rock blurs one’s concept of time. In “rock years” the span of my life was of no more consequence than my next step. The rock doesn’t care. For a time while on the trail, I tried to fathom it all, walking mindfully, no longer “falling” from one foot to the other, but slower, placing each step, feeling muscles work, attention to each breath, balance, and control, giving thanks for this moment in time and place.
But there is a lot more than rocks and one of the first things noticed walking one of the park’s many excellent trails, are the wildflowers. However, before a hike is undertaken, care should be used in the selection because the level of difficulty ranges from very easy to extremely difficult.
LICHEN AND FUNGI
Looking a little closer, when not negotiating one of the steeper more challenging stretches, lichen and fungi were also seen.
Some trails such as Wonderland and Ship Harbor took us right along the rocky coast with tide pools to explore.
Hiking with friends was the primary objective but near the ocean we were fortunate to see a few birds.
A hike around Jordan Pond was also on the week’s menu or was it the popovers at Jordan Pond House and then the hike? I’ll never tell.
Pausing for a moment at waters edge we listened and looked. The sun did it’s best to warm the late summer day as a cool lake breeze rustled the overhead leaves. The sound of gentle waves playing against the shore as patterns of light danced on the rocks below.
While in Maine it is hard to avoid the temptation to capture the local ambiance. This trip was no acceptation.
It’s probably best to consider this post as just the barest of appetizers. However, if you’ve never been to Maine or Acadia National Park, hopefully it has provided some encouragement to make the trip.
Thanks for stopping by.
Category: Central Ohio Nature, photography, Wildflowers Tagged: Bar Harbor, Black Guillemot, Bog Cotton, Bunch Berries, Calico Aster, Common Eiders, Common Loon, Goldenrod, Hairy White Oldfield Aster, Hermit Crab, Jordan Pond, New England Aster, Partridge Berry, Rose Hip Flower, Semipalmated Sandpiper, Shadow Darner, Wilson's Plover
Posted on September 24, 2013
I need to start by being honest. While fall is my second most favorite time of the year, behind spring, it is also a time of reduced expectations. Bird and insect activity seem to be in decline, the colors of spring and summer wildflowers give way to Goldenrod, Asters, autumn leaves, and then slowly . . . , better start thinking about next year adventures while catching up on reading and working on some favorite photographs.
But wait, this morning while walking along Griggs Reservoir the air was autumn day pure and cool, a Bald Eagle swooped down to the water’s surface before rising and circling against a Royal Blue sky, Gold Finches, looking for a meal, lighted on Cone Flowers, now devoid of their petals, as they made their way south, warblers flitted In the tree tops, a Black and White here a Magnolia there, and what about that vireo in the bush at the water’s edge.
Thanks for stopping by.
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