Friday, February 1, 2019

Hiking at Stevens Creek Heritage Preserve

This weekend, Dan and I went on a two-mile loop hike at Stevens Creek Heritage Preserve. It was a pleasant little hike with a couple of small stream crossings, a variety of trees, some big rocks, and even a bit of a view. Here are some pictures:

A small waterfall. Transylvania County, eat your heart out! ;-)

Dan "Sheltowee" Rogers, on his second short hike of 2019.

I wonder what lives there.

Parts of the woods were overgrown with bamboo.

Cool old decaying tree stump.

Large rocks on the side of a hill.

More rocks, and a twisty tree.
We kept seeing these tufts of sticks and leaves growing in the side of trees. We weren't sure what caused this.

Here's another one.

Dogwood bark! I'm always happy when I see dogwood bark! I love its nubby-ness.

Another way to identify dogwoods in the winter: opposite leaves (see below).

Opposite-leaved twigs form a kind of "turkey foot."
A view!

Pine tree bark. I'm not an expert on pines, but I'm guessing this is Pinus taeda, loblolly pine. 

Imagine my delight to see a baldcypress tree right on the top of a hill! I love how the bark looks like God just reached out with his brush and painted it!

Another unexpected delight: resurrection fern! These look dead and dried-up when the weather is dry, but when it rains, these beauties turn bright green and definitely alive!

Not sure, but I think this is reindeer lichen.

A baldcypress tree on the side of a hill with a view. I'm used to seeing them in swamps, so it was cool to see it here.

Twisted pine tree trunk.

More twists and turns.

Another view of the twisted tree trunk.

This is the twisted tree, with the branches and leaves growing only on one side.

This was the first and only sycamore that I noticed, growing (not surprisingly) alongside a stream.

I thought this was a neat image of the various parts of a tree trunk.

More resurrection fern! I would love to come back here after a good rain.

Dan's calves. Part of what make me fall in love with him.
All in all, it was a good little hike. It isn't too far from home, so I'm sure I"ll be visiting that trail again soon!

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