Annual New Year’s Day Tromp

Brrr...I love waking up late on New Year’s Day with thoughts of where I should take the dog for a romp. Usually Emily joins me, but she was off at a friend’s and so I headed out into a snowy, blowing day without her.

I’m not sure she was very happy with me.  Sorry, Em.

As is often the case with a winter walk, the low temperature combined with wind made me feel very cold in the beginning, but as I walked, it didn’t take long for me to warm up.  I headed down into a protected ravine at the bottom of which runs a creek.  There are hemlocks and yellow birch all along the way… beautiful.

Stonefly Nymph (or exuvia?)On the bark of one of the yellow birch trees, I found gypsy moth eggs… and also a gorgeous Stonefly nymph.  I couldn’t really tell if it was a dead nymph, or if the back had cracked open to allow the adult to fly free… Here’s another picture I took a while back of a living stonefly nymph we found in the creek at Allegany State Park:

Stonefly Larva

I played around a bit with slow shutterspeeds to try to capture the essence of the wind. The orange-brown leaves on the Ironwood tree were dancing up a storm…

Ironwood in the Wind

Even though I have billions of pictures of Witch Hazel, I can never resist another.

Witch Hazel

Emily finally arrived home shortly after I did. We may go out later this afternoon or evening and see how our cross country skis are working after a long summer in the garage…

Happy New Year, everyone!