Despite the cold, the forest floor is coming alive with splashes of color: carpets of delicate white spring beauties, patches of starburst white chickweed, bursts of purple periwinkle, flashes of yellow green-and-gold.
The spring show has begun, but it won’t last forever. Here are five spots where you’re likely to find the season in full flower for at least the next couple of weeks (longer in the high country).read more
I was walking the Matrimony Creek Greenway in Eden yesterday, lost in thought. Not deep thought, just the kind that never bubbles to the surface unless you’re on the trail.
There was a break in the week-long rain, but it remained gray and cold. Certainly not weather to entertain thoughts of spring. But suddenly I was, thanks to one of the sweetest sounds nature conjures — the ascending croak of a spring peeper.read more
One of the reasons we like to do a GetBackpacking! trip to the Shining Rock area in April is because we get to revisit spring. Traditionally, we begin at the Shining Rock Creek/Big East Fork Trailhead off US 276, at an elevation of about 3,100 feet. Here, spring is well underway, with mid-spring wildflowers in bloom, the trees essentially leafed out. But as we climb, as we gain more than 2,400 vertical feet on a 4.3-mile climb up to Shining Rock Gap, time begins to reverse itself. Trees just beginning to sprout leaves, wildflowers of the early season sort. By the time we reach the top, the trees are winter-bare, first-responder bluets dominate the wildflower scene. A visit to Shining Rock is like going back in time.read more
The news for this weekend is the weather. Don’t make plans for Saturday morning, do make plans to enjoy the rest of the weekend, a cool, sun-filled winter-like weekend.
Saturday morning — the exact time depends upon where you live — a cold front moves in, the kind of cold front ushered in by gusty winds, thunderstorms, possibly tornadoes. Then, sun — and temperatures that will drop into the upper 30s by late afternoon. Temperatures will drop into the low 20s overnight Saturday, rising only into the mid-40s on Sunday. Thus, you might want to reconsider the 9 a.m. Volunteer Days Saturday at Weymouth Woods Sandhills Nature Preserve and Carvers Creek State Park, but you should be OK for the …read more
At 2 a.m., we spring ahead, setting our clocks forward by an hour and advancing sunset accordingly. Today, the sun sets at 6:19 p.m.; Sunday, it won’t go down until 7:22 p.m. And that’s just sunset; we’ll still have lingering light for another 20-25 minutes or so.read more