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March 24, 2022 Wood Ducks & Needle Ice

It is springtime, the Wood Ducks have returned, the conk-la-ree! of the Red-winged Blackbirds from echo from the shoreline, and beavers are mating. The trail conditions reflect this time of year, snow, ice, water, and bare ground.




Pushaw stream trail is flooded, as is the middle part of the Conifer trail, where it parallels Pushaw Stream trail. Both the Pond and Lady Slipper trails are still snow/ice covered in the area where the canopy is keeping the warm rays of the sun at bay. This is also true for the White Pine trail.


Pushaw stream’s high-water has also flooded the center part of the Wabanaki trail and the High-Water Trail! Barrow’s Goldeneyes, winter visitors from Canada, considered rare in Maine, are still at Hirundo but will be leaving soon together with their chosen mate. These ducks like to feed and gather at the pocket wetland you can see from the Wabanaki trail. Bring binoculars, tread lightly, move slowly and little, so not too spook these wary ducks.



As you walk through the field and the Field to Forest trail you might see the path bulged ahead of you. Be aware that needle ice, fragile columns of ice formed with ground water, pushed up the thawed soil, you are about to step on. Bend down, take the time to marvel at the beautiful structures that cause frost heaving. Consider your next step carefully!




All the trails beyond Gate 2 offer a mixture of snow, ice, and bare ground. As the weather warms, both the Hemlock and Beech trail will have standing melt water. These areas are on the western and southern side along the Beech trail and throughout the Hemlock trail.

We recommend waterproof footwear, ice grippers or you might prefer walking sticks. Whatever you chose, enjoy the trails!


Don’t forget to share your adventure, stories, or pictures with us on Facebook. Happy Trails!