|Snow pack at 4000' on Mt. Tripyramid|
There are still two feet of snow even at the lower peaks in the White Mountains just 20 miles north of Meredith.
|Tree wells show the snow depth|
As I hiked the loop trail over the tripyramids I found dozens of purple trillium in bloom around 1500 feet elevation, while higher up they were still developing.
Around Lake Wicwas I see mostly painted trillium which are also blooming now, though I have seen some purple trillium on Meredith Neck.
There are also goldthread, fringed polygala, and many others booming now, as we are in peak spring wildflower season.
|The pretty and delicate Goldthread|
The polygala seem to be having a good year with large patches of them in many places - perhaps they enjoy the cool weather we've had. With all the new vegetation available in the forest I haven't seen deer lately. The does are probably eating well and staying hidden as they are getting close to birthing their young. But many signs can be found so we know they're present. Footprints of course are a definitive sign.
|Deer footprints in sand along Chemung Rd.|
But browse is also evident.
|Black cherry browse at chest height|
Deer don't leave a clean cut when they browse, as unlike rabbits which make a clean cut just like a knife, deer tear off the branches with their teeth.
Deer scat this time of year is often different from the small hard pellets one usually sees because the lush diet available now provides much more moisture than winter food.
|Spring scat shows their changing diet|
And finally, you might still find areas of dry leaves where the deer rustle around looking for acorns.
I followed this path for a little bit looking for confirmation that it was deer (turkey and bear will also search for acorns among the leaves) which I found shortly.
|Typical deer scat|
This has a fall appearance to it, so I guess that closes the loop and means that you can find all four seasons right now!
Lastly, a reminder there will be a guided bird walk this coming Saturday, June 1st at Page Pond in Meredith. Click here for details. I'm hoping to see some new birds, maybe even a woodcock or a grouse!
And, I just heard that our eagle eye loon spotters have determined that the loons have nested! I haven't seen the area yet, but our great team just put signs up this morning since it's in a high traffic area. Please keep your distance - at least 150 feet away, and we'll hope for loon chicks in late June!