Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Katie Bug and her beau Zack were to be out of school today, so Judy and I told them we would take them hiking at Burgess Falls. However, Wednesday started off under heavy clouds, no rain, just low clouds, and cool temps. Therefore, we decided to save the long trip for a better day, and just go somewhere within 20 miles of home.

Before climbing up Black Mountain, we passed this beautiful field of wild mustard in the valley below.

We ended up at the Justin P. Wilson Trail Head near Crab Orchard, Tennessee, just upon the plateau off I-40. When we arrived at the parking area, you could actually see the clouds drifting across the parking lot and trail. The temperature was about 10 degrees colder than the valley, and never got above 43! It was cold and damp hiking thorough the drifting clouds, but it was actually comfortable for a “big man” like me!

We saw hundreds of Bloodroot plants pushing up through the brown leaves, with an occasional bloom here and there. There was little else blowing besides a yellow violet I found.

About half way around the loop trail, Judy, Katie, and where Katie goes Zack goes, decided to cut through the woods to the parking lot and wait for me in the warm truck.

I finished the hike, walking much faster than I would normally with a group, and made it around the loop to where I had spotted the Pink Lady Slippers last season. There they were, but they were only tightly wrapped green shoots, about the size of your little finger, just poking up through the leaves. I’ll have to go back in a couple of weeks to get the bloom shots.

We went back down the mountain to Ruby Tuesday’s in Harriman and had a nice late lunch. It was a very nice day to be with the kids.


Loki said...

Nice merge of the mustard field! The weather has been as expected for April. Still kinda cold and rainy, but lots of color shining through!

Mushy said...

Thanks've been busy too!

Becky said...

I don't think I've ever seen wild mustard before. Hope you're still getting better from that nasty fall!

Mushy said...

I'm back Becky...feeling great. I'm back on the hiking trails.

FHB said...

Nice stuff man. You folks are blessed with local beauty. I love it.

And I'm glad to hear that you're feelin' better and back on the trail.

Suldog said...

What is bloodroot? Does it have any purpose, as food or medicine? I'd Google it, but I assume you might know.

Scott from Oregon said...

Glad to hear you're back and huffing and puffing around the woods!

Mushy said...

Bloodroot was used by American Indians for various skin cancer, considered by some, is one of them!