Winter Woods

Want to go for a walk in the woods?

Sure, I said, and so Harland and I  headed over to the woods behind Pony Creek Lake. (See my earlier post showing the lake here.) When the lake was built as a town water supply, it was required that the same number of acres be set aside for nature as were covered over by the lake. The result is acres and acres of land that has grown over in cedars, osage orange, and locust. It’s also become a haven for deer,turkeys, coyotes, and many other creatures.

After a snowfall is a good time to go out looking for tracks.

We walked along a well worn game trail.

These are deer tracks.

When deer walk, their rear foot steps into the print left by their front foot.

Here’s the trail of a coyote.

The snow is fairly deep and you can see where his feet brushed over the top of the snow as he walked along.

Here are the tracks of a turkey.

Here’s a close-up. You can see where he’s been high-stepping and dragging his little toes along the surface.

When traveling from one feeding ground to another, turkeys walk along a trail.

This trail is about 8 inches wide. Look at all the cute footprints.

Here, the turkeys have been pecking at a hedge-apple from a hedge tree, or osage orange.

Sometimes, even the grass leaves tracks in the snow.

As the grass swayed in the wind, it carved a crescent into the surface of the snow.

The last rays of winter sun glinted off the native grasses,

and we headed out of the woods back onto the prairie and for home.

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——-> UP NEXT: Another old time recipe: Corn Fritters.

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