Monday, March 13, 2006


Randy and I took a break this afternoon to enjoy the unseasonably warm weather, heading out to the Dale Engle Walker Trail, just a couple miles out of town. There's a trail along Buffalo Creek that winds, eventually, up a pretty steep hill and through some woods and fields. A couple years ago I was delighted to find a stand of bloodroot in full bloom. I thought it was a fairly uncommon wildflower, but then last spring I noticed some blooming in the yard of a house just down our street.

We brought along the digital cam, though there's not much up yet (in terms of wildflowers). I ended up taking some macro shots of tree bark and stones. Then, crossing a field, we ran into this malodorous fellow: a mud-caked snapping turtle making its way, I guess, toward the creek. It hissed and lunged when I got too close with the camera, and though I was a good ten feet away, believe me I jumped. This turtle is just amazing, totally armored and capable of inflicting serious damage to fingers or hands. Its smell was stupefying--I guess from hunkering down in the same muddy hole all winter--and we circled it a few times to get photos and then wished it well.

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