I made it my mission yesterday to wander the rest of the ranch. I had not made it to the southeast corner yet and wanted to make sure I explored it before we have to head home. Over the last days I have managed to circumnavigate the property line. 3 different wanderings during the day finally got me to the last area and by the end of the day I had walked over 10 miles, 23k steps. In our time on the ranch (5 days) I have walked over 40 miles. Pretty crazy to me but not surprising given my propensity to wander.
I have no clue what this damn thing is but it was crawling around in the breakfast nook on the tile floor. It had 6 legs and a long hairy body.
The damned deer are littering this ranch. Every time I wandered I flushed out numerous deer. This one was seriously giving me the stink eye. It was not too impressed when I walked towards it. It huffed, jumped up, and then hopped around the trailer.
This one nonchalantly mosied off into the woods and squatted while it gave me the stink eye. Apparently it didn't really mind being watched, or maybe that was what the look was all about...
I looked under and around the vast majority of the trees on the property in search of various fungus. These were ones that I had missed in the prior days or they had grown up in the time.
The bridge is the perfect place for the wasps to build nests. It is out of the way of the house and has plenty of places for them to build. This is the remnants of a massive one that was under the beams. It had 17 layers that I could see and when it was whole must have been the size of a basketball. I would not have wanted to come upon that when it was still going strong.
The east end of the bridge has a bit of a problem with the footing. It seems that the water has opened up a substantial cavity in the middle of the footing. I looked into it and it goes back a few feet. The owners have done a lot of remediation work to keep the bridge in place but it looks like they will have more to do this summer once the water level recedes.
In the SE corner of the property I only found a few bones. The deer jawbone piece and the part of a deer skull. I did see some really old bones from a cow but no skull. There have been very few bones that are even close to fresh. The main ones I have seen have been just some fresher leg pieces and bones.
In the middle of the field as I moved through and around the trees I found this glass Ball canning lid. It looks like it could be from a hinged jar or it might be like a Tattler style lid. We have a bunch of hte Tattlers at home with the o-rings so I am hoping that the ring fits this. Super cool and not something I have seen very often.
A small tree lay on the ground. It is totally dead and had toppled at the roots. The ants had invaded it and there was a massive pile of sawdust beneath it. I saw the pile from many feet away as it was a much brighter color than most anything around it.
So much moisture means SO MANY MUSHROOMS and fungus. Almost every downed tree and most untreated wood has some form of fungus growing on it. One of the things that makes me feel like being at home. Our farm is covered in as many types of fungus as this ranch is.
The southeast corner of the ranch has some really nice meadows that are filled with flowers. There is only the one property to the east of the ranch, then it is the Missions. The mountains only have a small handful of trails that climb up into them. The whole time we have been here I have been staring at the peaks and finding myself seriously wanting to go explore them.
The afternoon was nicely warm with the sun out and @stryeyz and myself went for a dip in the creek. HOLY SHIT is the water cold! When we first got here the storms were dropping snow on the Missions and then the last few days have seen warmer storms with a bunch of rain. My first wander in the morning I saw where the level of the creek was. On the next wander the level of the creek had risen by about 6 inches. All the rain and warm in the basin above had melted a bunch of snow and sent it down stream. The last few days the creek was a good bit warmer but yesterday it was like ice. Still nice, but damned cold.
We hung out in the hot tub for a while in the afternoon before I had to grill the burgers for dinner.
The sunsets really are amazing on the peaks.
For our last night together I got a fire in the pit going and the kids all did smores again.
The family took off for home this morning around 6:15 am and we will finish cleaning up before leaving for home ourselves by noon. It is only a few hours drive home for us and it looks like we will be going back to nice and warm weather. This was a super cool experience and a nice chance to get away from life for a bit. For me it was nice to just go wander and not have to be thinking of the boys since the cousins had them taken care of.