Saturday, October 17, 2009

Walking the Trail of History

Today started out as a beautiful day -- crisp, cool, sunny. We had a very busy and productive day. Among other things, we accomplished one of my least favorite gardening tasks... hose clean-up. It's always done in the cold, and you always get wet and muddy, plus it means you won't have anything to water for a long while. Then we went to the Trail of History, which is an annual event held in Glacial Park by the McHenry County Conservation District.

Here's a funny story from our walk back. Although it started out beautiful, the weather took a turn for the rotten while we were at the event. By this point it is very cold, cloudy, and intermittently raining. I stop occasionally to take photos of plant phenophases, and I admit that most people wouldn't use these things as photograph subjects, especially given the aforementioned weather. As I'm taking this picture of Indian grass with its seeds dry and ready to fall,
a kid... and I should point out that by kid, I mean a middle school aged kid, not like a 4-year old who could not possibly be expected to understand social mores such as if you're going to insult a stranger in public, you should probably do it, you know, in a whisper or something... so anyhow, a kid says to her mom, "Look at them. They're taking a picture of nothing. And just back there they took a picture of those leaves. [White oak, tips turning reddish brown, not included in post]. What's wrong with them?" Answer: I'm not sure, but I'm not DEAF, so we can check that off the list. We glared and mom, embarrassed, shushed kid and hurried the family along the trail. They got no lecture on noticing plant phenophases, or anything, but I did compose one in my head as we continued walking...

Here are some other pictures I took, despite the mocking of the general public.
Oaks across the wetland.
Milkweed seeds exploding.
Bog through the branches of bur oak. Leatherleaf is turning quite red in the bog.
Oak branches form an archway over the trail.


  1. Oh dash the general public, the real question
    is what is wrong with people who don't take notice or interest of the nature around them,
    or at least understand how someone could see beauty in a wetland or a slowly turning leaf- bravo to you, do what i do, find a local tract and go off the beaten path,away from the other people and their tramplin' feets ,that is where the really special stuff is anyways! cheers to you!

  2. Quite right -- people pass by the most wondrous things each day. Here's to finding the really special stuff! Thanks...