Sunday, March 7, 2010


I truly "love" winter.  One reason might be that I got into snowshoeing.  And of course you need winter...and you need "snow" for snowshoeing.  Last week the northeast got lots of snow.  We did "pretty well" here in the Esopus area, getting what I call a "refurbishing" of the snow layer on our pastures.  So I as able to have two good days of snowshoeing though all our pastures going over to the Pell Silo and back along the riverbank.  We have some coyotes, but I haven't seen any of them.  I HAVE seen their "four pointed" tracks in the snow.  Last summer I saw the largest one and it was a truly beautiful animal with about five different shades: brown, blackish brown, auburn, whitish grey and tan.  But it seems that they are not able to bring down the full sized deer.  So winters, with no small fauns to eat, is rough on them.  Do I seem "predatory".  Maybe so.  But that's the way I have come to see the circle of life in the sub human world.  There is a true "communion" there.  I NEED TO EAT YOU TO STAY ALIVE.  It's nothing personal.  If I were a human being fighting a foolish war in Iraq or Afghanistan, now that would be something different.  Because human beings have many other ways of living and living "holy communion" without hunting down and killing one another....
Was that a digression.  Yes and no.  Well let this HUDSON RIVER BIRDER get back to the bird world. I have "heard" a number of Great Horned Owls the last few days.  The first ones were hooting at one another like this--(HIT THE TITLE ABOVE) the other night when I walked along the road in front of the Redemptoristine convent. And today, Sunday March 7th I heard them hooting up on Shaupeneak Ridge.  By the way I have climbed from the Esopus  Fire House on the Ridge lots of times.  Today was the hardest.  Why?  First I did not realize how difficult the two feet of melting snow would be to climb further up the hill.  (Last week I went to North Lake in the town of Haines Falls and there were a total of 5 feet of snow on the ground!!)  So it looks like the higher elevations like Windham, Hunter Mountain, Haines Falls go a whalloping snowfall)
Anyway it was a really tough climb today.  And even coming down Popletown Road towards Union Center Road.  Because until Bea Moore's home it is not ploughed.  My socks go wet on the way up.  So I walked the four miles home "sockless" in my hiking boots.  Enjoy the hoots

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