Saturday, March 17, 2012

Awesome tree and tiny caves

These recent early spring days I took the chance of the splendid weather, and having a bit of free time, to walk around the woods around my home with my daughter.
We had a lot of fun walking together. And we took photos too.
Here some of them:


This is one of the first flowers to bloom; growing very, very close to the water. It belongs to the family of  Ranunculaceae. There even was a patch of them growing right in the middle of the little creek!

Along the path some of these stone piles could be seen. This one in particular was in a dip of the path (on the left side of the photo). During winter, this stone pile is the only way to know you are still on the right path and not walking cross country through the wood. And there are some places where going off the path could end you up at the edge of a steep ravine or at the top of a big block of rock with no way down. 


Stone piles like these can be found all over the world: in the European Alps, in barren areas with no good landmarks; even seen them in Australia.The origin and meaning varies from landmarks, piles that are used to store food and other important hings below them or some cultural and religious uses. The ones in the woods around here were done by passing persons for fun. Some have become path markers. But I think most are there just because people had seen and heard something vague about them and just add another stone to mark that they too had passed the pile. And, yes, I do remember that when I had seen such piles in the Alps during a vacation hike there many years ago I too added a stone to a pile while taking a pause to look around the awesome landscape there! ^^; 

We walked along this little creek right to the spring. Here an impression of the creek (taken in January BEFORE the snow and ice had come and passed away) as it is flowing over the rocks. It's a well visited tourist path; especially on weekends. Even now it still looked this way - no spring flowers there yet - only greener grass and moss.

When we finally reached the spring we looked at the place it came out of the rocks. Maybe there is a cave there? So hard to see in the dark and below the rock. So I used the flashlight of my camera to take a photo of what lies in the dark. 
Well, no cave there. Not one that a human could crawl into! But the water does find the way out right there.

The next day we went into the opposite direction.
All around there were also lots of rocks and "cliffs" with openings close to the ground. Again I used the flashlight to see beyond the area that was in daylight. But there was no water at all.




Well, there is nothing much there. Unless you are a mouse or a spider maybe.Or, if you're skinny and small you can use them as sleeping areas: about 1m * 1.5m * 0.5m of space.

On our way back home we passed an odd looking tree:

It had been cut at the top some long time ago. Then it regrew and had been cut again at the sides. But still this tree lives on - sprouting new limbs over and over again. Now this area is under nature protection. No more cutting of trees - unless they are so damaged (and hollow) that they would collapse onto the hiking paths for the tourists.
The "ancient" left over tree top is about my height; and we tried to climb up on it. To sit or lie on the strong horizontal limb to bath in the afternoon sun that was slowly being covered by hazy clouds again. (We didn't make it up as we kept slipping of the sides with our sneakers - barefooted we might have had a better chance. But we also didn't try very hard.)

And here a zoomed in view of the landscape across from the hill with clifff we were on today: 



I'm looking forward to the days when spring is fully here. 
With sunshine and warm air; and birds and insects all around; and green and flowers sprouting everywhere.

And I will take my camera along to make photos and share them with you. Nature is soooo beautiful, you just need to go out with open eyes and see and feel it.