One of the 35 phrases that make me itch are "Spring has sprung!" So I'm not going to type that. That being said, it is Spring. Things are greening up around here, little leaves they are a leafing, and all that. Esther and I took a scouting trip out to the Cliffs of Ruth to determine it's campability. Since one of our favorite camping spots in the state has recently switched to a "Boy/Girl Scouts Only" overnight policy (which frustrates me to no end) we have been tossing around the idea of just camping out on the property and figured the cliffs are the best choice when it comes to quick emergency shelter, flat tenting options, and plenty of sizable trees suitable for attaching hammocks to. The ridge around hollow is covered with beautiful, straight poplars that need some hammocks.
|What we think is an onion grass in pre-bloom|
While I was trying to figure out the world's most simplest knot, Esther built a fire ring, set up her hammock and took a nap.
Check out the hammock tie straps that Esther made from 1" nylon she bought on eBay. They are more friendly to the trees than using nylon rope or para-cord and a bagillion times cheaper than the store-bought straps.
Here's a really close-up look at the stitching. All hand-stitched using an upholstery needle and dental floss. Yes- dental floss. Mint-flavored, waxed dental floss, if I remember correctly. We use dental floss for just about any job that needs to be sturdy but doesn't have to look pretty. It's easy to find and holds up exceptionally well.
When Esther was moving boulders around to build her fire ring she uncovered two new friends, Stingy and Pinchy. Actually, these little dudes were only about 2" with their tail fully extended and while I was trying to position one to get a better picture it never once tried to sting the leaf I was using to gently lift it up and turn it around. I was careful to keep my fingers well away, but they never acted aggressive at all. I wasn't ever worried about the sting being lethal (wrong part of the country for that) but I'm glad I avoided it all the same- I've read it described as "about as bad as a bee" but also "like having your hand stabbed with a knife".
I finally got my hammock up and relaxed for few minutes under the cliff before we dropped into the hollow and followed the creek back up and out.
I don't know if it's because of the rain or just luck, but we've seen more morels this year than I've ever found on the property. This teeny little guy was under the leaves and Esther pointed it out to me. Earlier this weekend I found a large handful of them in the yard while mowing. Esther did some reading on preparation then fried them up with butter and salt. They have the taste and texture of scallops. I loved them and I'm glad I tried to leave some standing in the yard to hopefully encourage their propagation.