Posted in Autumn, Change, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Fire, Gifts, Gratitude, Hiking, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Portals & Pathways, Spirit, Walking & Wandering, Wonder

Hickory Point

On a Sunday hike in the woods.
Forest bathing.

Let your mind and soul be at ease.  Don’t grasp and grab for the magic and miracles.  When you reside in that place of stillness, the joy, miracles, and magic you’re seeking will find you.

~ Melodie Beattie

Growing as tall as the trees.
Growing as tall as the trees.

How was your weekend?  Did you do anything exciting, or maybe not so exciting but still worth a mention?

Summer scatters
Summer scatters

M and I went for a long hike in the woods yesterday.  We were doing some leaf peeping, but mostly we wanted to get out, explore, and enjoy the day.

Some color here and there.
Some color here and there.

I don’t know how M finds these places, but for yesterday’s hike he came up with Hickory Point Cypress Swamp.  It’s located the next county over from us, and is the largest southern swamp area in the state of Maryland.  Parts of it run alongside the Pocomoke River.

My favorite hiking partner.  Notice anything different?
My favorite hiking partner. Notice anything different?

There are at least 14 rare, threatened, and endangered species to be found in this Natural Area (it’s not referred to as a park or a preserve, but a Natural Area).  It’s also a nesting site for Bald Eagles.

The Sassafras trees are showing their colors now.
The Sassafras trees are showing their colors now.

Palamedes swallowtail butterflies, listed in Maryland as endangered, are usually found in these wetlands.  The red bay shrub lives here, too, and it’s because of the red bay that the Palamedes can be found in this area.  The red bay is a larval host plant for the Palamedes butterfly.  The larvae of the Palamedes will only survive on plants in the laurel plant family such as the red bay.

A fork in the trail.
A fork in the trail.

I wish I’d thought to look for the red bay.  I probably passed plenty of them.  Hickory Point has the largest population of the endangered shrub.  I was busy gaping in wonder at the beauty of the place to start identifying things.  Maybe next time.

An arc of oak leaves showing off their fall colors.
An arc of oak leaves showing off their fall colors.

Hickory Point isn’t too difficult to find with good directions.  There are no signs, and the only indication we’d found the right place was the gate we were instructed to park near when we got to the end of the dirt road.  There was also a Nature Conservancy sign hidden up in one of the trees.  I didn’t notice it until we were leaving.

Entrance
Entrance

They say the best way to explore Hickory Point is by kayak or canoe on the water trails.  Kayaking, as I’ve mentioned before, is something I have not done yet.  M and I have been canoeing several times, but kayaking seems like the best way to get around on the water trails here.  As you might imagine if you’ve ever looked a map of the Eastern Shore (or the Delmarva Peninsula), there are plenty of water trails to be explored.

Looking into the Cypress swamp.
Looking into the Cypress swamp.

The cypress trees will be a motivating factor for me.  I love them, and have read that the areas where they grow are best approached by water, meandering through the swamps and tidal areas.  My goal is to be telling you all about our kayaking adventures by this time next year.  Before this time next year would be even better.

Continuing.
Continuing.

I have more to show and tell, but it will have to wait.  It’s time for me to get outside and do some mowing.  I will be happy when mowing season is over.  From the looks of things, that might not be too far off.  We had a significant cool down last night.  I saw hints of frost on the grass this morning.

Step into the woods where adventure awaits.
Step into the woods where adventure awaits.

Thank you for dropping in today, and joining me for a hike in the woods.  Meet you out at the dock for sunset.  It looks like it could be interesting with just enough clouds to carry light and color from the setting sun.  Sunset is at 6:18 PM.  You’ll need a jacket or sweatshirt.  It’s not going to be quite as cold tonight as last night (50’s instead of 30’s).

Looking up.
Looking up.

Be good, be kind, be loving.  Just Be.  🙂

Today’s joys:  The early morning light hitting the red, orange, and yellow leaves of the sweet gum trees; fog dancing over the lagoon; pumpkin soup for lunch; laughing at the antics of Izzy and Bella (the cats); the sweet coolness of an autumn day.

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Author:

Robin is a photographer, artist, writer, wife, sometime poet, mom, grandma, daughter, sister, friend, and occasional traveler currently living on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. She finished a 365 commitment to get outside every day in 2011, and has turned it into a lifelong commitment taking one or more walks each day. Robin will continue to share her walks through her words and images on Breezes at Dawn. Older posts can be found at Life in the Bogs, her previous blog. Robin and her husband are in the midst of renovating the house and property they refer to as the Wabi-Sabi Ranch, 35 acres that include marsh, a dock on a tidal creek, meadows, and woodlands. Every day brings new discoveries.

13 thoughts on “Hickory Point

  1. I love your hike. Today it was especially nice to go along with you as I haven’t been out of the house since last Wednesday! I’m anxious to get out and see some color before it is all washed away with the heavy rains we have been having.

    I hope to see some kayaking adventures before too long, too!

    Like

Comments are delightful and always appreciated. I will respond when I can (life is keeping me busy!), and/or come around to visit you at your place soon. Thank you!

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