Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Hike Through Mitchell Woods

I was reminded the other day when my friend Peter visited from Toronto, of a wonderful long walk in the woods I took back four years ago in 2016.  He had come up to the valley as he often does, and gone walking through this rural property he owns, just last week.  I had done the same thing in early May that year, so I could easily follow his description of where he walked.  So come with me on an early spring walk - this might take a few days.

Although I remember the days when this used to be a hayfield, now it's grown up in shrubs and Peter has planted a lot of trees.  It's an easy walk up the old laneway, but I doubt if you could drive it anymore.

There are some huge boulders in the old stone fencerow that borders the field.

Here in southern Ontario the woods in early May is simply a beautiful place.  Those 'spring ephemeral' wildflowers take advantage of the sunlight before the leaves come out to bloom, sometimes in profusion.

 This is actually a huge old poplar towering toward the sky.

Sweet Coltsfoot, one of our earliest spring flowers, usually found in more open locations.

Dogtooth Violet or Trout Lily.

Blue Cohosh, one of the most unusual spring ephemerals in my mind.  It's a deep purple at first, and rises up so fast out of the ground on a sunny warm day that you can almost see it grow.

Leftover dried husks of last year's small puffballs.
 A few fallen logs covered in moss glowed yellowy green in the sun.

Before long I got out to the edge of the cliff.  Yes, there's a big drop just beyond those cedars.

A few interesting ferns on the limestone, these the evergreen fronds of last year's Northern Holly Fern.

Soon I found an open spot where I could get a view of the valley, looking northwest.  Those are the old Talisman ski slopes in the upper right; the village of Kimberley is out of sight to the right.  Did you notice the Turkey Vulture?

This is the baking Peter brought me back in early December.  I think we still have the pie to eat, but the muffins and apple crisp went very quickly!  Last time he brought baking; this time he brought apple sauce and maple syrup!  I hope this visiting with edible gifts is becoming a habit!  This and the next few posts are for you Peter.


  1. People like that make me want to bake. I must get back into the caloric intake stage! The photos were restorative.

  2. Lovely pictures. I think I remember this walk from back then. The tasty treats sure do look good! :-)

  3. It's nice to see photos of spring, three months to go and we'll see the first flowers.

  4. Nothing better than a spring wildflower hike in the woods! A friend that bakes is a good friend!

  5. Peter is a blessing and you've had some wonderful visits and hikes with him. Not to mention all those lovely goodies!! Yum!!

  6. It was almost like spring here today, though I suspect we may have some more winter to get through in the next month or two. I look forward to the rest of your walk.

  7. Lovely photos and do those deserts ever look yummy . I am soo looking forward to spring even though we haven't had much of a winter at all down here in southwestern Ontario ,

  8. I nice prelude to Spring. In my early down hill skiing days I actually got to fall down those old Talisman ski slopes a couple dozen times and I remember a two day back-packing trek across the top of Talisman where we got to sleep on the ground in the forest overnight. I'm guess that was about 1995.

  9. Yum, the bakery goods look delicious! I like the photo of the poplar looking straight up.

  10. Yeah for a baking friend and memories of good hikes in the spring!

  11. I suppose that for all of us there is an event that tell us that spring is really here, and while I probably have more than one, the first Trout Lily ranks right up near the top of the list.

  12. Wonderful visit to the woods. Good good with good friends.