Hiking the Audobon Trail

Warning! Very long post ahead!

Yesterday was absolutely gorgeous - mid 80's and not too humid. We decided to take a little hike along the Audobon Society Wildlife Sanctuary Trail. The boys were pretty excited!
Before we left, Quinn, Cade and I made a list of things we wanted to look for - animal habitats, feathers, pinecones, poop! I wrote our list on a little piece of cardstock, and took that list and a blank piece of cardstock, punched a hole and threaded some hemp twine through it so I could keep it around my neck during our hike. It worked great! And Quinn was so excited about writing down the "important" things we saw.

Here are my boys, ready to get hiking!











We started at the South Meadow Trail. Couldn't capture it on the camera, but there were lots and lots of birds flitting and flying around the meadow. They were singing and warbling and enjoying the beautiful day with us.







Lots of meadow grass and plants and yummy-smelling honeysuckle. We also found our first poop in the meadow! Not too exciting (except for the boys), as it was only goose poop. Quinn insisted that I take a picture, but I'm sparing you here.







We also saw this dragonfly hanging out in the meadow. I was surprised that we saw him - he was pretty far away (good thing I've got some zoom on the camera!). Quinn was very good at being quiet so he wouldn't fly away. (Cade, on the other hand, was somewhere up the trail, running and whooping it up.)



After the meadow walk, we headed into the woods......... ooh, ahh..

It was pretty buggy in there (lots and lots of mosquitos), but it was so cool and peaceful, until Cade arrived - he was trying to run (not a good idea on a rough trail) and was singing and yelling and shouting about everything he saw.









I did get him to turn around a couple of times so I could shoot a quick pic...









Quinn spent a little more time just looking, and listening and thinking. He was quite observant and very talkative... he would gasp with excitement every few feet - usually over a small hole (snakes, of course) or a dead tree (we actually saw one that looked like fish skin!) or some small bug. He was also very fond of his "hiking stick."






There were lots of little streams running through the forest, and Quinn especially enjoyed "fishing" with his hiking stick.









Cade found the pinecone for our list, and was pretty proud of himself for it.

Later, in the car, when I asked about what they liked on the hike, Cade immediately shouted, "Sticks!"






I was intrigued by all the ferns along the trail. I had recently read in one of the boys' dinosaur books that there were no flowering plants around at the time of dinosaurs, and that basically the plant life consisted of ferns. Don't know much about ferns (racking my brain for a school-days' memory), except that they reproduce by spores...I think. So I wasn't sure what those things were sticking up out of the middle of plants, and thought (maybe) that they had something to with the spore-thing. Will have to do some research. There were also lots of ferns that appeared to be "unfolding" like the one in the second picture. Pretty cool.

The trail led to the edge of the woods to a marshy area. Lots of murky water... but






We did catch sight of these two frogs hanging out waiting for lunch! The boys were beside themselves with excitement.

Then the frogs did the craziest thing! As daddy was pointing them out to Cade with a stick, the frogs started leaping out of the water, trying to bite the stick! I guess they thought it was an insect. Or they were just really annoyed about that stick hovering over them! Quinn thought that was so cool and had to give it a try. Sure enough, the froggie leapt right out of the water and almost knocked the stick out of his hand. I couldn't get a mid-air shot of the flying frogs, but here's a shot of the ripples from the frog descending....








Here's a pic of me for the folks (not my best clothes day, but hey, we were hiking...).







And notice everyone.... I've got ponytails! For those of you who don't know, I've kept my hair super-short for quite some time (like seriously, pixie-cut short). Last fall, I decided to grow it out for Locks of Love. It's taking a while, but it's getting there. I'm certainly in an awkward in-between phase, and for the first time in a long time realizing how hot hair is in the summer. I couldn't get it to stay back in one ponytail because the sides are still too short, but I did get it to stay in two!


So, the hike was a resounding hit! I can't believe the boys walked for almost an hour and a half without asking to be carried! I guess they're finally growing up. We'll definitely be headed back to the "forest" (Cade's characterization) throughout the summer... Hope you all enjoyed the little romp through the woods with us.

Oh, in case you're curious, here's our list from the hike (we didn't find any feathers, surprisingly):
Animal Habitats - Rock, Leaf, Water, Meadow, Tree, Ant Hill, Stream
Poop - Goose
Things we saw - A stick that looked like a fish, Bee, Birds flying, Dragonfly, Ferns, Pinecones, Stream, Frogs Jumping, Spider
Things we heard - Birds Singing
Things we smelled - Poop

P.S. This list was entirely dictated by the boys!

Happy Sunday!

1 comments:

  1. A. Sanborn said...

    What an incredible adventure! The boys would love the Holderness Science Center where there are Skunks, Bob Cats, Cougars, Bears, Fox... just to name a few along a wooded path! It's where we're off to on Tuesday with my daughter's class! If your ever in the area let me know Elizabeth we'll play tour guide for your family!

    Kudos to you girly for growing your hair to donate to a wonderful foundation such as Locks Of Love... Sophie has a lil' postcard and photos from donating hers... now she wants to know how many times she'll be able to donate it by the age of 18! Love your piggy-tails!

    Love all the photos! Oh, did you know that you can eat ferns called "fiddleheads" in the spring? Sophie discovered that she loved them when my parents cooked some up for her... they didn't get only a mere taste! LOL.... I don't think they'll invite her next year! *wink*

    Hugs,
    Anne :)