I made a point of heading over to Alley Park yesterday morning. I’m slowing increasing the weight of my backpack, so this time it had about 40 pounds in it.
I found it a bit more challenging for my bare feet, only because I felt the stones more than usual (and my knees complained).
All sorts of plants were coming up. Spring has definitely arrived.
First off, a Mayapple and Trillium sitting side-by-side:
It’s way too early for Trillium to be blooming, so I was really surprised to see one—but just one:
This is also the time of year for fiddleheads. Those are the still-curled-up ends of ferns:
They have their name because they look like the tuning end of a fiddle (who knows what they were called before fiddles were invented). There were whole patches of them:
It’s also the time of year that certain other, rather undesirable plants come up.
Right in the middle there you can see a nice, fresh sprig of poison ivy. Note the waxy look about it, and of course the leaves-of-three. Those other similar plants nearby by (with their leaves not yet fully out) have five leaves: that identifies them as Virginia Creeper.
All of the poison ivy didn’t have erect leaves yet, either. However, again, you can identify it by the three leaves and the waxy look:
These look really similar, but note the five leaves.
That makes it Virginia Creeper.
Finally, here at the end of the Kettle Hills there is a dam that creates Twin Lakes. You can barely see the water through the trees.
All-in-all, a very nice 3-mile hike.