I was supposed to have Friday off from work, but meetings got scheduled, so my boss said that it was okay to switch my day off to Thursday. Unexpectedly having that day off on my hands, I decided to go hiking. Imagine that! I packed my pack - including emergency gear I knew I would not need, but you should always be prepared - and headed out for the 2.5 hour drive. My goal: to hike the 7 mile River Bank Trail, shown here with my start and end at the purple arrow, in Staunton River State Park in the southern Piedmont of Virginia. I hiked this route clockwise.
I'd hoped to see lots of wildlife along the rivers, but didn't see much - just a couple of ducks, likely mergansers, flying rapidly away. I also got a glimpse of the elusive white-tailed deer bounding through the forest. But I did have solitude. During my four hours of walking and exploring, I saw more lizards (3) than humans (0) along the trail. And I did see enough wildlife to post one of my "What Am I?" sequences.
The trail started with a pleasant walk through a pine forest. Most of the hike was through open woods, with a lot of direct and indirect sun. I actually applied sunscreen after a time.
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