Sunday, November 17, 2013

Winterberrys and Posts

Saturday was a beautiful Fall day, warm, clear, with a lot of people out enjoying the parks.

The big beech tree near the Red Barn is finally turning.  This one had held on to summer later than all the rest, but the frosts were finally getting to it.  Winter is coming.

The wildlife is getting ready for Fall yesterday too.  Here's a flock of turkeys in their natural habitat; the 12th green at Tashua Knolls.  They need to move out of the way quicker, Thanksgiving is only a couple of weeks away.

Sunday was a different day, it started out a somber grey, but it looked dry enough so we started to install the last of the trail marker posts on the Paugussett Trail.  It was misting when I started, but not too bad.

But then it rained once I got out at the Wiacek Open Space on Constitution Boulevard North.  Since everything was wet we kept on going.  The trail marker posts go along the edge of the meadow and the blazes are high enough to be seen when the hay is high.

The Winterberrys are in rare form this year.  This one is at the junction to the Soundview Garden Cut-Off Path.  They like full sun and wet feet.  They really stand out in this portion of the Paugussett Trail now that the leaves are down.

The Asiatic Bittersweet was also doing well along the powerlines.  A non-native invasive species that's not good to have but it's tough to control and spreads along corridors like the powerlines.

South of Wellington Court the trail was re-routed off the powerlines into the woods.  If you look closely, you can see the holes drilled by a sapsucker into this small tree right above the blaze to turn right.

A post was added to replace a small stone cairn on the powerlines South of Wellington Court.  Chuck Sack from CFPA had walked the route and the additional marker should clear up any confusion on which way to go when traveling north.  Somebody topped a bunch of pines under the powerlines and left all the tops right along the trail - probably the power company - hopefully it keeps down some of the briars.

The rain had turned to a dense fog by the time I finished at Wellington Court.  Another post was added to show the turn going South - see it's clear as a bell.

One reason that we try to make the blazes clear is to help hikers and residents find their way during bad weather.  Today was a good test.

Helpful Trail Tip:  Remember to put a flashlight in your pocket when going out on late afternoon walks this time of the year, particularly if the weather is iffy.

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