Wednesday, December 28, 2011

A Quick Glance Back

Four of my last five reviews (and five of my last six posts) have been about Lower Hillsborough Wilderness Preserve, so it is time to turn my attention elsewhere for a while and write about some of the other places in our area that make for good hiking.

But before doing that, I want to publish some of my pictures from Lower Hillsborough that I did not publish before. All of these were taken on the hikes detailed in my posts from November 21st, November 29th, December 6th, and December 20th.

Looking back, I feel I slighted the Buteo Trail because the only picture I published of it was of a sign. So here is one from along its route, showing a cypress tree in the Hillsborough River:

And here is another picture from along its route, showing Sarah on a palm tree curving over what I called “the skinny branch” of the river:

East of the spot where the Hillsborough’s fork creates the skinny branch, Sarah pointed out a cypress knee that bears a strong resemblance to a bird:

While walking through the preserve, I have been struck by the “aliveness of death” when it comes to plant life. That phrase probably sounds like nonsense (and is definitely more wordy than it needs to be) but it simply means that life springs from death and that dead things are often a beautiful part of nature’s landscape. For example, check out how plants and flowers are growing around and within this log:

I have also been struck by how easily nature can obscure signs of man, as evidenced in the following picture that I took along the Main Trail. It leads me to believe that the trail might once have been a road, because the tree is swallowing what appears to be the post of an old stop sign.

And finally, I like the fact that Lower Hillsborough’s wildlife makes its presence known both by being visible and by leaving tracks:

Although I have recently hiked a lot in the preserve, I have covered less than one-fourth of its trail miles -- barely scratching the surface, even when it comes only to the side paths accessible from the Hole in the Fence Trailhead -- so I will definitely be writing more about it in the future. However, as the great Michener character Pasquinel would have said, those writings will come not today but “in due time.” Until then...Happy Trails!

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