Views from today’s hike on Moonshine Creek trail
Let’s try something new — come join me along a short hike on Moonshine Creek trail. It’s in the San Felasco Hammock Preserve near Gainesville, Florida.
This a favorite quick hike of mine that meanders a couple miles in a hardwood forest for total (and blissful) immersion with nature.
Got yer water and a cap? Away we go!
Edible American Beautyberries greet me on the way in (supposedly crushing their leaves creates a natural mosquito repellant)
A trail blaze marking the way - what a glorious sight!
A fallen tree cleared way for the sun to break through here and it’s now overgrowing this part of the trail. Butterflies love it.
Exposed roots add character (and trippy hikes)
Lovely light play dancing in the breeze
A few years ago this tree explosively snapped in half. When you see this it’s usually from a lightening strike or powerful winds.
This always reminds me of when I was camped near Wheeler, Oregon a few years ago and a tornado tore through overnight. The next morning you could see the trail it carved through a forest of tall trees snapped in half like toothpicks. Fascinating and terrifying.
What lurks within? As beautiful as this looks, be wary - this is where alligators and snakes can pop out at ya. A past lesson I unexpectedly learned when an alligator and snake simultaneously scurried away when I came too close on another trail. Zowie.
Natural bridge across a swamp. I love walking across these.
Mirrors of trees
Hmm. Who is reflecting what?
I’m not sure what these are but they look like a community of fairy homes.
A twig blazing its own path.
Chainsawed remnants of a fallen tree that was blocking the trail. Lots around here due to summer rainstorms and flooding weakening root systems. 60-70 years old this tree appears to be.
Bay of ferns - a favorite crossing of mine.
Stair of roots — it goes quite a bit further, making fer good exercise.
This bridge comes up a bit short thanks to recent floods
A beautiful grand ole Juniper always welcomes with arms and roots to give a big hug. Appearances are deceiving here - it’s at least 200 feet tall.
Fallen trail markers are pretty common around here as you can tell by now. This is the part of the trail that becomes a side creek after torrential rains.
Ah, here is Moonshine creek as it winds through. It’s named for an old illegal moonshine distillery that was nearby. I’ve found pieces of jars ’n such now and then. Some days I swear I can smell the ghost of alcohol in the air.
We’re near the end… This is where I take my shoes off and soak my feet in wondrously cool waters so I’ll be taking my leave here.
I hope you enjoyed our hike.
Thank you for joining me along the “Ray.” It was fun having you along and I look forward to more. : )
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