It’s Saturday, the campground is full. When hiking earlier in the week I passed a trail not taken on my way to another one. I kept thinking about that one I’d passed and decided to head out and see where it went even though it is not named or marked. How lost could I get in 400 acres?
This is the main trail that led to my first waterfall hike. I went down to the bottom and took a right thinking I’ll go as far as I can, see what I see, and turn around and come back the same way.
What I saw was a simply amazing number of different mushrooms in this dripping rainforest. How I wish Tom and Maggie Barham had come with me from Riverbend. I need a mycologist. Mushrooms are impossible. Look at all the little white ones growing along my narrow path.
Bear in mind that all identifications are “I think” versions. So I “think” this is a white coral. IF so, aptly named.
Dripping rainforest is right.
I “think” this is a yellow capped amanita mushroom and if so poisonous but really pretty I think.
The path went from as narrow as seen above to wide with giant brown mushrooms,
I “think” this is either a parasol or an algarve mushroom. Parasol seems like a good name.
If this is not a leopard mushroom, it should be.
My wide path turned into a tunnel.
The only way I’ve ever seen these black mushrooms with white edges are as bracket mushrooms on trees but here they are in the path as stand alones.
Interesting white edges and buttons in the middle of the large one. Anyone know what this is??
The tunnel opened up for a while and then seemed to dead end.
These next two mushrooms were very interesting and I don’t have a clue. Can’t find them in any reference but clearly related.
As I said before, sure wish Tom the mushroom man was here.
Looks like I’ve run out of path. But I walk up closer and try to see beyond.
By carefully stepping over, under and around I come shortly to a forest road where I find this hairy mushroom below.
Probably time to turn back but I go a little further just to see where the road might go. I’m careful to mark where I stepped out of the thick woods so I can return to the path and back track. It’s hard to turn around when I want to see what’s up ahead.
I walk quite a ways down the road and just before I decide this isn’t going anywhere I recognize and I might as well turn around and retrace my steps, I see a trail sign for the Bear Den Trail.
So on I go following it and I end up at my favorite falls. Very fine!! And how lucky! I wasn’t much interested in back tracking.
If you want to see the movement of the water and hear the falls, use this link.
There is a short cut that goes up a steep trail from the waterfall to the campground entrance road, past the office and by the pond on its steep climb back to Winnona. It’s all road so not so much fun as hiking in the woods.
Kids are enjoying the pond today.
And I’ve enjoyed my made up mushroom hike. Tomorrow I’ll go out of the campground to nearby Linville Falls even if it is a Sunday.