Thursday, February 9, 2012

A few roads less traveled.

Jack picked me up this morning a little before 9:00, and we were off on another of life’s little adventures.  The plan was to go to the Crosby Arboretum in Picayune, MS.  Since Jack is still looking for more needles for his baskets, we took several roads less traveled through the Desoto National Forest to get to our destination.

IMG_6074Most of them were not paved, but meandered through the forest.  What a glorious morning it was.  We drove slowly, and stopped often.  It appeared that we had the entire forest to ourselves.  We found about four nesting sites for the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker that are managed by the forest service, and I fleetingly saw two of these woodpeckers flying through the forest.


At many of our stops, Jack hopped out to measure the length of the pine needles.  These were great old stands of long-leafed pines. 


              While he was busy with the needles, I was checking out this year’s bloom of wild Jasmine.


The bloom has just started.  I really like the heady fragrance of these flowers.  I was also about collecting a few of the very large cones from the long-leafed pines.  Those cones hold a fascination for Emma, and are about the cheapest toy to keep her entertained outside.  She tosses and plays with those things like they were little hedgehogs or something.

As the road got skinnier and skinnier, eventually it petered out, and we had to turn around and plot a new course.  We did run into one rather irate land owner along the way, but we never went on private property.  We made a hasty retreat along that road.  Eventually we made it back to civilization and Jack, the last of the big spenders, took me to a Waffle House for a late lunch. (where he once again accused me of being a cheap date Smile with tongue out)


It was 2:00 by the time we finally made it to the Crosby Arboretum.  This is a wonderful place, but in my opinion, could use some volunteers to develop ways to make their many trails more user friendly. 


There are some gorgeous trails, and beautiful views, but a better trail marking system is needed.  Many trails intersect, and there is not good signage as to which trail goes which way.  We only encountered two other people along the trails.  There are lots of plant identification signs along the way, but I would like to see their descriptions include when the various plants bloom. 

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When you pay the reasonable entrance fee, you are given a small bag of food for the fish and turtles in the ponds located along the trails.  As we walked to the outside pavilion, we found this terrier very interested in the pond water just beyond his reach.

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Here’s the reason why.  When you throw the food kernels into the water of the pond, the turtles come on over to get fed.


But before the turtles can get there, many pan fish beat them to it.  That terrier was just mesmerized by all the commotion in the water.  Not much of anything is blooming right now, but I imagine this will be a marvelous arboretum to visit in a few more weeks.

After then checking out the Biloxi Airport to see where I’ll be picking up my daughter and grandgirl next week, we finally made our way home and arrived at the rig around 5:00.  It had been about a 200 mile journey today, but a fun and enjoyable time.  Thanks for the memories, Jack.  After a big hug and mutual wishes for safe travels, Jack was on his way until the next time our paths cross in August…

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Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy