Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Ice Flow

I don't think of Missouri as having ice flows. But this rock outcropping shows that water will go down to bedrock and then run along the top of the rock. It freezes as it comes out of the ground.

The ice is not flowing but as the water comes out of the ground it freezes as it falls.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Old Beaver Activity

Here is an old cut that has been here for awhile.

The beaver cut this tree down and did not use it.

Notice that the beavers will cut the stem evenly untill the stem is weakened enough to fall.

This is the same tree shooting from the top down.

During my recent hike I did not see any fresh wood chips or fresh cut trees. Have they moved? Only further observations will tell the tale.

Beaver will hybernate durning the winter. But what they do is hole up in their den and eat the branches they have stored nearby. In Missouri they do not have the freeze that stays all winter, so I don't know if they are inactive. I do not see signs of their activity though.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Tree Measurement: Cottonwood

I came across a large Eastern Cottonwood and thought I would measure it.

I came up with a height of 120'. A circumference of 149". A canopy of 78' measured one way and a canopy of 64' measured another way. This gives a point total of 287. The average diameter of the tree is 47". There are only 3 other trees that I have measured that have a larger tree diameter. One of those trees is probably 2 trees grown together. I would like to find the rules on when a tree is 2 trees and not one.

This tree is near my Sycamore vine tree. So it should be easy to return to and check.

It is interesting to note that all my top tree points are in the bottom lands. There is one exception and that was a Sycamore that rated over 300 points. But it is right below a spring that flows all year.

It seems that this statistic shows the availability of water will cause trees to grow to their potential. So water is one of the limiting factors of tree growth where I live.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Turkey on Katy Trail

On my first day on the Katy Trail I ran across some Turkey. My camera was in my handlebar bag. So stopping and getting it out and getting this photo, I just got the remainder of the group of turkeys.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Sycamore Vine Tree

Sycamore vine tree. That is what I call this tree I found on a recent hike in a bottom land area. The tenacity of this tree to continue to search for light is amazing.

Jesus is a light of revelation to the gentiles. Luke 2:32 For this reason I want to go to any lengths to find the leading of the Lord in my life. The revelation from Jesus will enable us to understand life and help others. It is not that I would be a know it all. But as Jesus has helped me, I am able to help others.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Below are some Old Testament prophesies of the coming messiah.

Jeremiah 23:5

5"Behold, the days are coming," declares the LORD,
"When I will raise up for David a righteous Branch;
And He will reign as king and act wisely
And do justice and righteousness in the land.

Micah 5:2
2"But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Too little to be among the clans of Judah,
From you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel
His goings forth are from long ago,
From the days of eternity."

Zechariah 9:9
9Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout in triumph, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your king is coming to you;
He is just and endowed with salvation,
Humble, and mounted on a donkey,
Even on a colt, the foal of a donkey.

Hosea 11:1

1When Israel was a youth I loved him,
And out of Egypt I called My son.

Isaiah 7:14

14"Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel.

Isaiah 9:6

6For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Bottom Land Woods Video

Here is a video of bottom land woods in the winter. Video taken 13-Dec-08

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Bald Cypress in the Fall

Bald cypress loses its needles in the fall. They fall from the bottom up.

This is the photo I took the 9th of November this year.

This is the same tree taken in the summer. Photo below

These are some different Bald cypress trees photo taken 5-Dec-08

Monday, December 22, 2008

Plant Acorns

Steve Nix at has an article on planting acorns.

  • Collect the acorns from September thru December.
  • Keep them in plastic bags in the fridge.
  • White oaks can be planted right away, while Red oaks need dormancy and can be planted from April thru June.
  • Use gallon jugs, poke holes in them and plant the acorn 1 1/2 times the sized of the acorn in loose potting soil.
  • Plant the acorn on its side.
  • Don't allow the tap root to grow into the soil below the jug. That would tear the root when you remove the jug.
  • Planting should happen when the first leaves open.
  • Dig a hole twice as big as the dirt in the gallon jug.
  • Plant the oak with the root crown the same height as the soil surface.
  • Note: root crowns are the point where the root meets the bowl of the seedling.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Yesterday's Hike

I am hiking in many areas this winter. I want to get a record of different places and return to them at future dates in different years and different seasons. Here is a photo of a trail that appears to me to be carved out of the ground by use and erosion.

To the right is a farm pond.

From this view the trail is on the other side of the ridge at the top of this photo.

The weather while on this hike was in the mid 20's. The snow is not crunchy but is not powdery either.

Making my way further down the hill I came across an unusual tree. It was bent over but and the branches are now the leader growing upward.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Camping at Wilton on Katy Trail

Here I am camping for my second night on the Katy Trail. There was a store there where I bought a pizza for supper.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Vines Cover Forest

Here is a good, summer shot, showing vines completely covering the forest. Certain areas of the woods are like this and other woods don't have any trouble with vines. I wonder if it is in the chemistry of the trees. One of the trees that I notice a lot of vines around is Honey locust.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


I stopped from work and took this photo.

Woods in the snow is quieter. All seems to be quiet when snow falls. There is no crucnhing of the leaves as I walk.

Snow brings a sense of cleansing. It cleans the air. But what it does to my attitude is allow me to think of new beginnings.

I like snow to follow tracts. I have not done much of it but is interesting. You can't hide what you are doing in the snow.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Long Lost Bench

I came across this bench while hiking in the first snow of the year. I remember this bench from a couple of years ago. I was walking along a trail that I had not been on and when I saw this bench I was glad and surprised. When I came across this bench in the past I had come at it from a different direction.

This bench represents one of the reasons I hike in the woods. It provides a place to rest and reflect on life. My walk with God is benefited by finding quiet places to think and wait on Him.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Bluffs along Katy Trail

Here are a couple of interesting photos of river bluffs on the Missouri Katy Trail. Riding my bike in this area was rewarding. It was rewarding to experience the river to the south and the bluffs to the north.

Why is it that we are attracted to bluffs and mountains? There is a visual granduer that is true. But I think there is also a longing for heights because of the protection or challenge they present on getting up there.

God says he is in a high and lofty place and also He dwells with the lowly. We can look to God and have peace and contentment in our heart no matter where we are at. It was easy for me to be at peace with God on the Katy trail. But would I be at peace if I was stuck on a job in a factory? Normally I would not. But with Jesus in my heart it would not make a difference where I was. Peace would not rely on me or my circumstances but in God's goodness to me. I am so thankful that Jesus lives in me.

Thank you Jesus for your goodness and Your word to my heart of peace in the midst of trouble which life throws at me from time to time.

John 16:33
"These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation but take courage; I have overcome the world."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Recap, Blogs and Info

Here is a Youtube video showing chickens stop rabbits from fighting.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fall Color Video

Here is a fall color video that I took the 1st week of November.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Native Grass

I hiked along this native grass park a couple of weeks ago. I was surprised how tall this stuff gets. In the summer I got some good wildflower photos in this field.

Walking along the side I shot back to where I started.

I thought the sun made good effect on these fall grass plants.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Clearing in the Wilderness by Fosburgh

A Clearing In the Wilderness
by Hugh Fosburgh 1969
An account of the Adirondack woods by a true woodsman.

Hugh Fosburgh lives and works in and around Bakers Clearing. Near Northcreek New York

His accounts of bears, beaver, lost dogs, deer, and other wildlife is delightful.

He talks about logging the woods and what is needed to get through the seasons. He is not just a logger, but a caretaker of his land.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Deer Video

We saw a buck and doe rustling through the woods coming towards us. I told my dog to check them out and she went over to them. The doe ran on ahead past us but the buck was cut off by my black Labrador retriever. The buck then turned and

ran alongside us and stopped to look at me. I was fumbling to get my camera ready but by the time I got it out the buck was gone.

We walked further in the woods going up and down gullies and finally came upon the buck again. My camera was ready this time. But as I started to film I could not see the Buck in the view finder. I was on target but started to pan to the left looking for the Buck. Just then the deer buck bounded off into the woods and all that was seen was its white tail.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Recap News & Blogs

Acorn counters were at work again to check on the mast production in Missouri.

Tree sculptures

Arbour sculpture

I found a site that links to different posts on the "Economic Benefit of Trees" I have added this to my links list.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Break on Katy Trail Pilot Grove

I stopped at Pilot Grove to read and rest. This was nearing the end of my first day on the trail. I rode 43 miles that day and was enjoying myself.

The hustle and bustle of society becomes an irritation to me at times. I like the silence of riding my bicycle. The Katy Trail offered an opportunity for me to reflect on my life and plan for the future and listen to God for His direction.

Pslam 62:1
"My soul waits in silence for God only;
From Him is my salvation."

Friday, November 14, 2008

Hickory With Fall Color

Zooming in on the buds of this hickory I ID it as a Bitternut hickory.

I always enjoy the fall. One I like it because of the revitalizing I get by the cool weather. I don't work up a sweat hiking through the woods. Of course the color is enjoyable. There is some sadness as the trees drop their leaves. But I enjoy the easiness of hiking through the woods off trail.

Fall A Time For Color

Kids have a ball
when they roll in the leaves of fall.

The color of tree leaves lined up on the street.
The cool weather relieves from the summer heat.

A time of hiking
Family raking

Color to see.
and be amongst the trees.

Leaves fall to the ground.
the freedom to get out of town.

I am not a poet
but I don't know it:)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Two Toned Chinquipin Oak Leaf

This is the same Chinquapin oak leaf. I flipped it over to take a picture of the back side. I saw a little bit of red in the veins on top and when I flipped it over the red dominates the bottom.

Life is always interesting to me. I see in myself some rough edges in my personality. I try to be nice to others but there seems to be at times something that is selfish. It can't be hidden. When this occurs to me I go to God in prayer and ask forgiveness. I read the Bible and pray for God to soften my heart and make me like Him. When I am relying on Him to live through me I am able to help others and not just look out for myself.

Psalm 69:5
You know my folly, O God; my guilt is not hidden from you.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Missouri River Jetty

Here are a couple of photos I took of the Missouri river that is flowing over a rock jetty established by the Corps of Engineers. At the current time of these photos the jetty are covered by the height water of the Missouri river.

Above is a photo of the same jetty exposed by lower water. The purpose of this jetty is to slow the current at this point and cause debris in the water to settle on the river bottom. The slower the water is flowing the less volume of debris it can hold.

Over time the river will deposit enough debris to fill in the bed to become part of the bank of the river. Why?

The Corps of Engineers wants to straighten the river and narrow the channel. In part this will make it easier for barges to use the river.

This is good strategy for barges and economic development but not for wetlands. Wetlands provide habitat for wildlife. They also provide a storage area for flood water. If the river is diked there is no place for flood water to go. Therefore the floods will careen down the river channel until a dike is broken. Then with the broken dike and damaged farmland, (which depended on the dike), the flood water finds a place to store the excess water. If the river was left alone this would have happened naturally.

Man can change nature for a time but only with constant effort. The forces of nature will continue to chew away at what man has put in its way.

Do we try to set up barriers against what God has planned for us? We may succeed for a while but in the end it will fail.

To cooperate with nature seems to me to be a much better way to manage lands and to cooperate with God also makes more sense.

Matthew 11:28
"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and YOU WILL FIND REST FOR YOUR SOULS.

For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Pin Oak Parkway

Riding my bicycle on a Sunday afternoon I decided to stop to enjoy this parkway and see if I could get a photo. I kneeled down to get under the branches and was able to get this shot.

Luke 11:10
"For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, to will be opened."

Monday, November 10, 2008

Pawpaw Fall Color

It is interesting as I walk further into the woods the Paw paws get more yellow. They are the undergrowth trees with the large oblong leaves. This was probably the best day for color which was the 2nd of November. As I remember in the past the best day in these parts would be the middle of October. Anyway I was glad to be out and getting a few photos.