It all started out one September morning when I decided to go for a walk in some nearby woods. My usual form of exercise mainly consisted of 5 miles on a stationary bicycle in a small weight room at work. Since I am fairly new to exercise, if I accomplished riding a four-minute mile, it meant I would be done in 20 minutes. That particular day, I figured I would get in an hours worth of walking in because, when I walk, I have a tendency to get distracted with the taking of pictures.
I drove (should have walked) about a mile from where I worked and parked my car at the edge of the woods I had decided to hike through. Before I left my car, I scribbled a note of what time I began my hike and a phone number in case of, of…..never mind. I can only imagine my wife’s fear if she would have received a phone call informing her I was missing!
Upon entering the woods, I was equipped with my camera and my collapsible aluminum walking pole which I had received as a gift but had not had a chance to break it in. Looking back on it now, taking the walking stick into the woods may not have been my best choice because of the thick undergrowth I would be traversing over. Too late to turn back. I had already gone 50 feet! The deeper I got into the woods, the more evident it became to me that it had rained recently. I knew I would be getting my shoes wet in the grass and leaves that covered the floor of the woods but I didn’t know just how wet I would be getting.
In the particular forested area I was in, there were no marked-out trails. One reason was that I was making my own route which was clearly not marked. Sure, there were animal trails that had been slightly enhanced by minimal human traffic but those passages had many places that had become so fully overgrown that a person had to clamber over a fallen tree, through thorn laced vines or things of the likes.
The vines and downed logs were not as bad as what I was about to face. I had to deal with My own wild imagination! There I was, All alone in the woods, (at least speaking of another human presence), where I starred in my own horror story. The deeper I got, the worse my thoughts of “something” happening.
Now, you have to know that the whole woods covered an area no bigger than 1/2 mile by 1/2 mile so it wasn’t likely that I was going to get so lost that I would have to cut off my own leg and eat it raw to survive! That would be silly. I don’t even like leg-of-hiker! Still……it was just me, face to face with nature. As I continued on, I was surprised at all the variety of “discoveries” I came across. Some of them were at the hands of squatters or other humans who had entered the forest. some of what I happened upon was at the hands- no, at the legs and feet and so forth of the forest dwelling creatures!
I also came across some other pretty cool sites that God had contributed.
And then, there was the bizarre. I came upon some things which were not exactly what you would expect to find in a forest.
And lastly, there were the Creatures Of The Forest!
I believe the below spider is the culprit of which I had most of my literal “run-ins” with! As near as I can tell, what I encountered was the Orb Weaving Spider.
Orb Weaving Spiders (Family Araneidae).These belong to the largest family of spiders. All construct the circular, flat, wheel-like web in which they trap flying insects. The very large black and yellow garden spider is a typical example
Garden spider in her web.
Now, these creatures were not the in-your-face creatures but more the ones of under-your-foot squeeshies if you’re not careful!
I also had time to just be me, which included my “entrapment”! This case was not due to the spiders.
Finally, I found my way back out of the forest! I had stumbled around for over two hours, had gotten 1/4 turn off according to the compass (which I didn’t have), coming out on a different side of the forest than the one I had entered into.
Am I scared about going back into that forest again by myself? Hah! I laugh in the face of danger…..as long as I am still alive…………..safely in my car……………driving away……..in the middle of a sunny day…..!