a walk in the park

by Kaylah Stroup
Last week Jeff and I woke up early to take a hopefully foggy walk along one of the trails in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park. I’m honestly not one for hikes in the park. I don’t like walking along trails. I want to go off and look for mushrooms, skulls, and other things you almost never find along the beaten path. This walk though, it was perfect. It wasn’t quite as foggy as we’d hoped but it was still absolutely gorgeous. The temperature couldn’t have been better, there weren’t many other people, I saw some dogs (very important, clearly) and I am just beyond pleased with my photos. I don’t care what anyone says, Ohio is beautiful.

The whole time we were out I was collection plants to press. I’ve pressed a lot of the common plants we have here so when I press more of those I try to find ones with interesting patterns on the leaves. I spotted some tiny leaves early in the hike that I thought looked really interesting from standing height but when I bent down to pick them I realized there wasn’t a pattern on the leaves, it was dew! Needless to say I spent the rest of the hike with my eyes scanning everything for more dew to photograph. Every time I start to think about selling my macro lens I take a shot like the two above and realize how silly
that would be.

On the way back to the car I was starting to get crabby. We walked for what I felt was too long (told you, I’m not necessarily fond of trails, especially ones that don’t loop) and it was getting really hot really fast. Then we started seeing turtles… lots and lots of turtles. Just chilling in the sun, soaking up those rays. It’s basically a fact you can’t be crabby when turtles are out looking so darn cute. I mean just look at that little dummy with his legs all sprawled out.

Despite me being a total whiner when I’m hot and tired, it was one of the best mornings in a long time. Totally worth getting up at 4:45am for!  I want more mornings like this.

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