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Exploring Forest Trails at Elk Neck State Park

The Ravines Trail at Elk Neck State Park features the effect of erosion on the soft soils of this park at the headwaters of the Chesapeake Bay. The trail winds through Eastern deciduous forest with a variety of trees, shrubs, ferns, and a few wildflowers still blooming.

In fact, I was so intent on starting my hike, that I almost missed  tiny flowers blooming, yet hidden, in this field at the trailhead:

field

blue flower

 

 

white flower

and a mushroom:

mushroom & blue flower

Further along the trail, I also spotted these:

another blue flower

another flower

There were more blooms along the way –

tulip poplar – I think this one has a worm in it:

tulip poplar with worm

a flowering shrub I haven’t ID’d yet:

flowering shrub

mountain laurel almost ready to bloom:

mountain laurel

Mountain laurel is abundant along this trail; I hope to get back in a week or so to see it in bloom.

Other interesting sights:

smack-dab in the middle of the forest is this little patch of saplings:

patch of saplings2

a very gnawed tree:

gnawed tree

this hole is home to a squirrel, I watched it scamper in:

squirrel home

and one of the several bridges that carry you across the ravines:

bridge

I explored another trail too; that’s for a separate post. Over the past few years, I’ve camped often at Elk Neck, but never explored the trail system. It was delightful to walk along these little gems.

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