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A Winter Walk in the Woods

Just a few days ago my neighbor and I took a walk up the hill onto some property that belongs to the developer of our sub-division. It was one of those grey drizzly days which we have been having here in the Finger Lakes. People have told me about the waterfall up the hill but I have never seen it for myself.

There is virtually no snow pack in the Finger Lakes region this year and with the mild temperatures that we have been having, our lawn is bare of snow. The bushes are beginning to be fooled into thinking that spring has arrived. But in the quietness of the woods, there is still a little snow left, but only just a covering which will soon be gone. There was plenty of icy water coming down the hill and the waterfall appeared as two falls with the flow of water cut in half by an ice bridge across the center of the falls.

Except for the sound of the falls, it was quiet in the woods. Normally the snow pack would be quite deep for this time of the year. And in springtime, the melting snow would fill the falls with a cascade of roaring water. But this year, the flow of the water is much more gentle and calm.

I wonder how the animals are doing in the woods this year as I see deer and raccoon tracks all around in the snow. I also see dog tracks and man’s footprints along the trail and wonder who the greater threat is: the cold wet winds or man and his best friend?

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