Exploration

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Where the wild things are.

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The first of many interesting finds.

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There’s a huge hillside in the very back of the property that’s covered in Mayapples. It is absolutely beautiful, like a lost land you can disappear into when broken and come out whole again.

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A closer look at another Mayapple patch.

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I tried to get an overall picture to show the sheer size of the tree, but it was hard to do. While taking this picture, though, I did notice something else…

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It’s branches are so thick that they look bigger than a lot of the surrounding tree trunks.

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Obviously, something has made a home in the trunk. I’m guessing it’s pretty hollow.

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It didn’t translate well in the photo, but this hollow nub is a honeybee hive. Cool to watch, but I sure didn’t want to get a closer view.

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A view of the hillside I’d climbed to get these photos. It doesn’t look like much, but I felt like I’d climbed Mt. Everest!

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This looked like a good place to stop and take a break.

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Especially since the hillside was covered.

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This little guy gave me a heart attack when I nearly stepped on him. I’m not sure what killed it, but it had to have been only minutes before.

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I love national parks, but I love these hidden little places on my mom’s property more. So few people know about them, making these hidden little gems so special.

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I started following the creek, mesmerized by the trinkle of the water and the way the light played along the surface. Ducking briars and climbing over fallen trees constitutes quite the workout. My buns have never been closer to steel form!

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Speaking about the fallen trees, the root structures are truly amazing.

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This tree continues to amaze me. It’s so old and the roots are so strong that it still supports itself even though the dirt below it has long since been washed away by the creek.

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I wanted to show just how far over the water this tree truly is.

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Now I’ve arrived at what is one of my very favorite spots on the property. The slate waterfall. Granted, it isn’t tall, but it is wide and absolutely stunning to me.

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There’s something about being able to disappear into the woods…about finding yourself when you’re alone and nothing to back you if you make a wrong move. You come back so much stronger than when you left.

And smellier. Covered in scratches, mud, and possibly a few ticks as hitchhikers.

I couldn’t be happier.

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