Sunday, November 29, 2015

A walk on the wild side

One of my favourite places to go for a walk with the big black dog is in a conservation area set aside by the village of Grafton. A path through cedar swamp and mixed hard and soft wood bush has been   created with little bridges over the creek that trickles through the area and pebbles on very wet spots...though those have worn away somewhat over the year.

It is picturesque - with little benches set up to stop and enjoy the scenery and the quiet. It is only about a kilometre in length - a huge circle that begins and ends at the arena and a collection of ball fields that are used fully during the spring, summer and fall. But it feels far away, in the wild.
The bench is that blurred beige object at the top of this image.
 Though I've never stopped long enough to sit and enjoy the sounds and let Spirit explore more fully, I've often thought what a good place to come and sit and read for a while. Or paint.

There are windfalls and blowdowns everywhere but there are also good smells for doggy - at least that is what he shows me by the stops at almost every tree, and occasional wanders off the path into deeper bush.

It is only a short walk from our wee home but we could be miles away...and many people from the village use it. You can see that by the way the path is worn down in spots. Of course it's wet, and might be full of mosquitoes in spring, but worth every bit of bug spray. The openings in the bush reveal swampy land, full of ferns and cattails and other wet-loving foliage plants.

But mostly, it's the birds that flit from banch to branch, tree to tree, the knowledge that there are deer in this bush, squirrels leaving calling cards of half eaten apples beneath the occasional tree, and once in a while the sight of a rabbit lipperty lipping along disguised by nature with its winter coat of grey and beige. Whoops have to grab the dog's collar. He is usually very good and watches carefully in case the bunny makes a mistake and moves closer. But I want to take no chances with this wonderful dog.

It's getting dark, we are close to five o'clock, nearly supper time and Spirit wants me to hurry up, not dillydally taking pictures.

 The fallen trees tangle over top of the stream, but the water still flows clean and clear and sometimes can be heard. We come to the last bridge, and then to the open space behind the arena. the car and home. Spirit will be happy.  Suppertime soon... but we'll be back perhaps tomorrow or go to the big trails in the Northumberland forest or perhaps a walk around the block... but we both love the walks in the wild.


  1. Yet more proof that there are adventures to be had close to home. I marvel at would could be perceived as the vastness of the number of leaves in a tree, the miles of mychorrhizal fungi under our feet, the sheer numbers of caches that a squirrel can hold. This is proof that you don't have to be in Alaska, Labroador, or Brazil to have an adventure. Yep, adventure can be had right out the back door!

  2. You got it WildBill and I treasure these adventures as I know you do with your wonderful bloodhounds... so good to hear from you.