Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Two Weekends on Old Rag

We volunteered on Old Rag with Old Rag Mountain Stewards each of the last two Sundays. The two days couldn't have been more different. Sunday on Memorial Day weekend was crowded, busy, and hot. There was severe weather forecast for this past weekend, which held the crowd down to fewer than 20. The weather never did materialize, although it certainly felt like it would out there.

Memorial Day weekend:
 Hiking up the Weakley Hollow Fire Road
 A Black Snake along the road.
 Viburnum acerifolium (Maple-Leaf Viburnum)
Houstonia cearulea (Bluets). These are one of my favorites in the spring
 A tiny little mantis assassin bug nymph (thanks, David!) on the back of a leaf.
Rhododendron prinophyllum (Hoary Azalea)
 Hazy view to the south from the Saddle Trail.
 The spot where I always take a picture.
Galium aparine (Cleavers). This isn't an amazing picture, but I threw it in because it reminds me that there are still things I haven't seen on this mountain that I've hiked over 50 times. This is a new species to me. It is possible that I've hiked by it before and just haven't noticed it before, but I did this time.
Two new volunteers near the beginning of the rock scramble.

Last Sunday: Flower, flowers, flowers!
 Aquilegia canadensis (Wild Columbine)
 The day started out damp and humid. We hiked up into the fog for a while.
 Looking towards Etlan, up above the clouds.
Michael with two friends
Kalmia latifolia (Mountain Laurel) on the rock scramble
More Mountain Laurel, which was going full blast this past weekend. As long as I don't have to bushwhack through it, it is one of my favorites.
 The same spot, with a little more undergrowth this week.
 Thalictrum dioicum (Early Meadow Rue) in the wind
Sysirinchium angustifolium (Blue Eyed Grass)
Penstemon canescens (Gray Beard Tongue)


  1. The "tiny mantis" is probably an assassin bug nymph of one species or another. Image search on that phrase and see what you think.

    1. Wow! I definitely agree with you. Thanks for pointing me in the right direction.