|Trees and trail|
The forest is largely undisturbed and displays characteristics of an old-growth forest, including Douglas Fir trees over 400 years old, a wide diversity of tree species, snags and decaying logs, and a complex architecture of canopy, understory, shrub layer, and tapestry of the forest floor.
I also saw a few stands of my favorite fern, the maidenhair, and was so pleased to get a good picture during the light rain that fell much of the time we were out. It was just Melanie and me, again, as the others decided to hike another local favorite, but we were looking forward to experiencing this one alone, or mostly so.
It's the time of the year when the dormant mushrooms again sprout out of the ground, and seem to appear instantaneously, although I do think they take a day or two or three.
|Quite the crowd|
I don't know how long these have been here, but I suspect they are pretty recently sprouted. Looking at them, you can almost imagine them to be a gathering called together for a 'shroom convention. They crept quite a ways up the tree as well.
Although for most of the time we were out, there was a light mist and even a little bit of rain, occasionally the golden leaves would light up when the sun filtered through the forest and gave us an enchanted view.
And then we were at the pond, where we could see the changing leaves around it, and if you were to look very closely, you can see tiny little raindrops falling lightly. The stillness of the pond's reflection, under a cloudy sky, completed the atmosphere of peace and contentment.
|The trail back from Geneva Pond|
And then we made our way back along the footpath to the trailhead, having enjoyed a wonderful morning in the nature reserve. We covered 5.5 miles in total, with an elevation gain and loss around 600 feet. Not our usual distance or elevation, but we were both so happy to be out here, together, enjoying this natural forest treasure.