Pattison on Wheels

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

3-31-08: Back To The Woods

Too much easy living—stasis. I drove to the coast and camped at Hunting Island State Park. The forecast is for rain so I tried to get as much hiking as possible before dark and tramped about the interesting but still wintering woods in search of wildlife. There is a lovely beach here and more leaves on the trees than there were inland. Walking in the woods there were sometimes smells of overwhelming sweetness but no sign of flowers yet. Other places had a rotten smell that seemed as if something had died there a long time ago. Are those little palms what they call palmettos? [Three kinds in the park. The palm trees I mentioned are cabbage palmetto which is the South Carolina state tree, dwarf palmetto, and the shrub-sized saw palmetto.] Squirrels, cardinals, vines, Spanish moss,and tall palms scattered among the pines and hardwoods.

I got crossed up in my hiking plans by miscalculating the tide. There is an inlet that floods at high tide and my intention of hiking back on the beach failed and so I had to turn around and backtrack for several miles. I was getting worried because it was already 6 PM and I had forgotten to use my insect repellent. I did a fast march back to the campsite sweating in the high humidity and still saw no photo ops. I spooked a local species of white tail deer. They don't just have a white tail—it is more like a flag. Just as I came back to the camp area there was a small herd of deer quite unconcerned how close they were to me and I took many shots being pretty well eaten by insects in the mean time.

I made a great dinner of rice and beans and fresh blue corn chips and set up the desktop computer on the picnic table to check out the photos just as it got dark. I had processed a couple photos when it started to rain. I ran around unplugging hard drives and power cords and stashed it all before it got too damp. I took the book I got when I heard it might rain a lot for the next few days and retired to the tent. It stopped raining immediately. Oh well, bed time anyway.


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