Thursday, October 9, 2008

Fall Hike

Posted by Kirk Mona
Ahhh, time for a posting. I finally have a spare moment here in the evening. Being a dad makes blogging a slower process. These are just some quick photos from a staff hike we took on Monday. That would be Paul Smithson, Me, Jen Ester and Kathy Feste. Julie Grecian took the photo. We headed out into the lesser explored western half of the nature center. The field we're standing in is one we rarely go to. It is an important part of the nature center from a land perservation perspective but we don't use it for programming.


I was really impressed by the amount of milkweek on the western side of the property. It seemed to be in pretty healthy abundance.


One of the interesting things we saw was more tornado damage from the Memorial Day weekend storm. This is the tornado entrance into the woods on the westernmost side of the property. When you get up close you can see trees go in every direction due to the rotation.



Below is the view from inside the woods. The camera is looking West, the diretion the tornado came from. Click to see a much larer version. You can see some mature trees with the tops missing. That takes at least 110 mph winds. It can be had to appreciate the damage from a simple photo like this but here's something to consider. This is a mature forest with a closed canopy. See how much sky you can see in the photo? Before the storm you couldn't see sky like that. You can follow where the tornado went bymentall drawing a line through the sky from the right side of the photo to the left. I wish I had taken a photo but one uprooted tree already had a young buckthorn tree growing in the hole left by the root ball. That's depressing.


On a more beautiful note, I spotted this cool Milkweed Tussock Moth Caterpillar. That's all for now!
~Kirk

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