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Posts Tagged ‘Mushrooms’

Ummm, I don’t have a whole lot to say,  I guess, but please enjoy the photos I took this weekend. First up – pics from Saturday afternoons walk with my youngest at Sweet Marsh. Had to see how high the water is for this weekends duck hunting.

I wonder if there is a nice buck calling this place home. I've run across some nice tracks a couple of times in this area.

Love the deep blues and greens of fall in the marsh. See the maples in the treeline turning?

Lowest I've seen the water in the 35 years I have been shooting wood ducks back here.

Believe it or not, that blue in the sky is not "photo shopped."

It was quite a stretch for my puny camera, but these are sandhill cranes. This marsh has a breeding pair or two.

Butterfly trying to suck up the very last bits of nectar from this thistle's fading blooms.

AND – I took my boys squirrel hunting Sunday. I could get into quite a spiel I guess with my feelings about this. But I’m pretty sure you have an idea whats happening in my chest and brainbox.

He could have had a couple more, but he was a little axious. Happens.

Dryad saddle - edible in the spring when young and fresh.

One of my most favorite places on earth - a spring flowing out of a woodland hillside.

Drank some brew, also –

Not as good as last years, but still good. More Octoberfest to come now that my cold is almost gone!

Peace and take care –

Your friend –

Casey

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A Night Walk and A New Squirrel Pocket.

I don't know why I put my camera through this, but can you make out the deer?

It has been a long week, my friends, and thought that I might get some reprieve from life’s responsibilities by going for a little night walk, letting the light of the nearly full Thunder Moon and the faint luminesce of the Milky Way impart their gifts into me through the pores of my skin – if it could make it past the Deep Woods Off, that is. And I truly hope it did. I really cannot wait for the end of mosquito season, even with the knowledge that the little bloodsuckers need their time to do whatever it is they are supposed to do. They seem very out of control this year.

Critters have been scrathing at the top of this bolete.

But before I was enveloped in darkness, surrounded by the sounds of a summer night – the chirping of various things; crickets, cicadas and tree frogs – a walk under the trees was made along game trails, hoping to find mushrooms I have never found before – chantrelles and king boletes. There was no luck to be had on that front (the mushroom pictured was not a king bolete in my opinion – the stem was not bulbous), yet there is time before late fall sets in. So there is still a chance of finding a specimen or two. That is if I have a mind to concentrate on mushrooms instead of the hunting seasons fast approaching. The soon-to-be Hunting Moon brings with it squirrel season, and an early duck season. Then the deer bow season starts, followed by the rest of the duck season. Then trapping starts. In between all of this, the brown trout will be spawning, giving me a good shot at netting a larger one – my personal best only being 16-17 inches long! One of my favorite critters that Nature has devised.

I guess my pack will be stuffed to capacity real soon!

This wasn't the only clump of shagbark hickories on this hillside.

In the fading daylight, I found a real nice pocket for squirrel hunting, most of the squirrels I saw were greys. This hillside has a generous share of hickory, oak, and locust. Just a ton of mast. And some very playful chickadees! Squeaking and flitting from oak twig to oak twig, raining small acorns down on this intruder. Thank goodness their territory didn’t include the stands of shagbark hickories I found! This hillside is very easy to get to, and should be a great spot to walk my kids into during the darkness just before dawn. This makes five good pockets I can use for putting squirrels in the freezer. I should start stocking up on barbeque sauce.

A critter crossroads.

Also, though it’s too soon to tell, I may have found a decent stand for this late muzzleloader deer season. That is if I can come by a rifle this year like I did last, thanks to a very good friend. It is kind of hard to describe this spot. It seems to be a crossroads of well worn paths that come and go between features that deer visit. A field to the north, a stream to the east, a stand of cedars to bed under to the south, and mast trees all round. Looks good to me anyway, but I’ll have to keep tabs on it as the year progresses. And who’s to say I will make it out come deer season? I cannot make that promise to myself or to you. But I do have the squirrels and ducks and trout covered, so there, at least, is the making of an awesome fall already.

Until I can write again (which will be soon – I have most of next week off and plan on going trout fishing at least once) –

Take care –

Casey

P.S. The pics I have been taking lately have not turned out well, but I did get a good BEER shot this past Monday. And it is highly recommended by this beer drinker. Also, Oktoberfest will be here soon, and Sam Adams made a high quality one last year. So I’m recommending that already, too.

A guzzler, I assure you.

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Mason finds a chunk of sandstone with a hole being worn into it.

Sometimes I wonder what I will feel responsible for as I’m nearing my deathbed (a good many years off, hopefully!), and look back at life. For some folks, it may be the sins they feel they have committed and are not sure they have been forgiven of. For others, they may look back and feel that they have contributed good things to the world around them; either their work was important or their children were able to become doctors or ambassadors or whatever.

Photo of thistle flower by Mason.

Being the father of four children, and someone who does a significant amount of wondering, sometimes I flash-forward and ponder what marks my children may make upon the world. I can dream big of them! Then reality and teenage years come along and make a mess of all that. But as long as they become HAPPY people, I’ll think that is contribution enough. That seems a hard enough accomplishment these days. And so far, so good, I think with the one who has left the nest, and a couple more getting ready within the next few years.

My last kid, who is only ten, is going to turn out alright, too. As we made a morning hike this fine day, several pieces of pleasant and fantastic conversation came up, and I’ll relate two of them here as proof that he’ll be just fine and happy.

The path...

A trail we walked reminded him of the path Frodo, Sam, Merry and Pippen had fell upon in the movie, The Fellowship Of The Ring. The path where they fall into mushrooms. My boy stops and looks ahead, points and says, “Dad this is like in the Lord Of The Rings!” As we look ahead and I agree with him, a wind comes up and leaves fall from the trees to the path and roll towards us. “See?” That’s my boy.

The second bit happened whenever we came upon stretches of the trail that were rocky. He has always seemed to like rocks, and is always picking them up and asking about them. Unfortunately, I am no good with rocks. Flora and fauna has always appealed to this walker. But I promised him the next time we make it to the book store that we would buy a rocks and minerals field guide. I would like to learn more about those myself.

On a mission...

He spots a red object off the trail, yet not quite in the woods. “Aha!” he says. But he seems disappointed when he finds that is a mushroom. “I thought it was a sunstone. Have you ever found one?”

I told him that I had never heard of a sunstone before.

“It’s in the wizard book,” he says and gives me a look. By this he means our Wand Maker’s Guide Book, and what it says about sunstones is that if one is embedded in your wand, the power of the wand will be enhanced.

I hope he finds one some day. He has a wand of oak that we carved awhile back, and oak is used for protection. I’ll find a way to embed that rock for all the enhanced protection it can afford. Got me a wizard in the making.

Here are more photos of our walk this morning. I hope you enjoy them!

Until I can write again – peace and take care.

Your friend –

Casey

Woodland sunflower.

Indian pipe. The pine woods are full of them.

A brown snake! I love snakes.

This spider web looked like a CD hanging in the middle of the air, or maybe it was a time warp vortex!

I only had one one mushroom pic that looked good. Damn it.

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