Well, now I am two hikes behind again, so time to get cracking. This hike, to Cumberland Marsh Natural Area, occurred on November 18. My original intentions were to do a 10 mile mountain hike. Everything was packed and ready to go. The day was perfect. But I got up, looked at the sports page, and realized that my college team - Villanova Wildcats - were playing basketball on TV that Friday afternoon. So after some deliberations, I decided to have the best of both worlds - a fall hike and basketball!
Cumberland Marsh is a beautiful stretch of the Pamunkey River and surrounding forest. The last time I went, it was warm weather and I was besieged by deer flies and some ticks. It was cooler this time, and I didn't have that experience. I photographed some birds for my iNaturalist project, and just took a short, slow walk of a couple miles. I saw a mature bald eagle, and that was the highlight.
At the start of the hike is a short boardwalk with a view of the river. I'd hoped to see some ducks but didn't. You can also canoe and kayak here.
I saw two nice butterflies - this variegated fritillary and...
Fall was still very much in evidence here three weeks ago.
I sometimes like to look at individual leaves, and I found these to be rather striking:
My hike was too short, and I was tempted to stay, but I had not gone to the mountains for a reason, so I went home to watch the Wildcats take care of business against the Demon Deacons of Wake Forest on TV.
My next hike was a week after this one, on "Black Friday." But I am going to call it "Black Bear Friday!"
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