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A Walk in the Country / Oregon Ridge / Loggers Trail


The forest and a beach in central Baltimore County

Here in Maryland, autumn seemed to arrive later than usual. In fact, because of a very dry summer, many trees were losing their leaves before they turned color. But in the last week of October, the weather rallied to give us a brilliant burst of color.

 Like many, I visited Oregon Ridge Park on a recent weekend to take a country walk in the spectacular color. Autumn days here often have moderate temperatures, in the 60s, very little wind, and abundant sunshine in crystal clear skies. Sunday was a perfect example of one of those days.

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Distracted by Morning Nature Activity

Do you leave for work in the daylight? I usually leave when it’s still dark; it’s rare that I’m still at home when the sun is up. Wednesday was an exception. So I was distracted by all the morning activity that I usually miss

Leaving my house, I caught the tail end of the massive flock of blackbirds. In the fall and winter, thousands of starlings, grackles, cowbirds, and red-winged blackbirds fly north from their night-time roost to forage in the farm fields of northern Maryland.  They fly right over my neighborhood. It’s an impressive sight. The flight lasts for several minutes. This is what the stream of birds looks like (picture from last year):

bird flock

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Racing to Glimpse a Solar Eclipse

I had missed the news that there’d be a partial solar eclipse, at sunrise, visible in the eastern North America states on Sunday morning. But in the 15 minutes after waking, trying to figure out which clock has the right time, I log on and learn of it.

Since it’s still dark, I know it hasn’t occurred yet. But since I haven’t had coffee, it’s a bit difficult to quickly comprehend exactly when official sunrise occurs in southeast Harford County.

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