Autumn has certainly arrived and with it some heavy October rainfall. The forest is soaking up the moisture, the paths are strewn with leaves, and there are some great colours in the forest. The Blenkinsop Valley is also putting on quite a show. A bird watcher pointed out some Juncos, which I had heard but couldn’t identify. They sound like two stones being tapped together. I am finding it a little distracting now walking and thinking about what I will write, and taking pictures. I can see this post will become less frequent. The experience of being in the mountain taking precedence.
The hike and the forest take on a different feel when you are showing the trails to someone who has never been on them. The hike turns into a exercise and an explanation. You become the window for what they see and you are not able to lose yourself in your own ramble. I don’t do this very often, but I like to introduce the forest trails to those who have only ever walked the road to the top. My friend noted a picnic spot, made comparisons to her ancestral home, and wants to find “little” Mt. Doug.
Lovely Sunday afternoon to catch up on a trail I haven’t been on in a while. Too many cars, I counted 45, before I could cross over at Mt. Doug Park into the forest. I had to hike up the north end of Irvine and get up high before the cars were a distant hum. Two walking-stick enthusiasts stopped for a rest at a bench that sits along the road, and when I crossed over to the south side of Irvine, I noticed another bench I had forgotten about. Quiet resting places. The south side of Irvine is quite a steep going down, and I realized it is time to get back into hiking boots and out of runners. Coming down I thought about the foot prints I was leaving behind. A way to mark my place in the woods.
Quiet day in the forest today. After yesterday’s rain, there was a stillness in the air. The rain washed dirt and pine needles down hill in bands of ribbon-like patterns. The ground was damp enough to allow for a grip to your footing. 360 clear visibility at the top of little Mt. Doug. Madrona farm still has quite a few cabbages and cauliflower to harvest. Headed out in just a t-shirt and managed to stay decently warm. Dog to human ratio 2:1.