Fall In the Woods


The trees around here have blazed with color in the past week or two, making it an absolute treat to go anywhere for a walk, even around the neighborhood. I’ve wanted to get out and revisit some of the places where I’ve walked or hiked earlier this year, and since I finished up my market baking early yesterday, I persuaded my hiking buddy to kick off work early and join me in a hike at Johnson Woods.

Our previous hike at Johnson Woods introduced us to a verdant landscape of majestic old trees and a vibrant undergrowth of second- and third-generation trees. In late summer, those trees were thick with green leaves, making the woods seem dense, but before we even reached the parking area, we could see more color and more sunlight filtering through the forest.

Though the predominant fall color in the woods is gold, we spotted patches of orange and red high in the canopy, as well as some lingering green for contrast. The afternoon sunlight made the preserve seem even more magical than before, picking out patches of gold amid the green and brown and highlighting a variety of different and colorful fungi on fallen logs. As you can see in the photo above, no filter was needed to take fabulous photos of the place!

We meandered along the trail, with me stopping frequently to take photos, but we met up with a few people enjoying an afternoon walk – and then met them again as they walked a second lap through the woods. Can’t blame them – it’s a peaceful place and a nice, flat, steady path to follow.

The forest will be a different place again in a couple of months, so I am hoping to revisit it come winter, preferably with snow on the ground for a whole new experience. The old saying tells us “you can’t cross the same river twice” – and I’m quite sure the same principle applies to walking through the woods. I will look forward to discovering new facets of Johnson Woods throughout the seasons.

Since we are just passing peak color for fall foliage, I hope to get out on a few more hikes to catch the brilliant display before the weather strips trees of their adornment. What a beautiful season this is!




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