After my short workout with the two Team in Training Teams in the morning, I got down to Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge for a short 4 mile hike that afternoon. We have had weeks of what passes for cold in Virginia, but the last two days were mild, and it felt great to be out and about in the outdoors for a little while. At one point, I gazed out over the marshes and spoke out loud how much I love being outdoors.
The dike trails remain closed for more than two more months, so the hiking opportunities are limited. Unlike my last hike here, I didn't see much wildlife: just a rabbit and a quick view as I turned around from looking to my right of an aquatic mammal diving. I waited for five minutes to see if it would surface, but if it did, then it did so some distance away. My guess is that it was a nutria, although a muskrat could also have been possible, or even an otter - very unlikely, however. I could hear the amazing calls of hundreds or even thousands of tundra swans out in the marshes, but couldn't see them. Here are a few photos from my hike:
The first trail that I hiked on was this short nature trail:
This freshwater pond reflects the winter sky:
View of the winter marsh
Unlike my dawn beach hike and my beachcombing hike of a few months ago, I didn't hike long on the beach. But I had to at least get a quick look:
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