Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Moss Rock Preserve, the Western Half

I went hiking at Moss Rock Preserve in Hoover, Alabama, with Anna, Blake, and Darby. Blake and I had been with another friend. Tyler, at the end of February (here) exploring the eastern portion of the preserve. On this day, we were setting out to see the western half, including Boulder Field, the Great Wall, Tunnel Falls, and whatever else happened across our path.

Panorama of Boulder Field at Moss Rock Preserve
Boulder Field lies about a tenth of a mile in from where we parked and is an aptly named landmark. It is one of the primary areas of the preserve that plays host to countless rock climbers and boulderers. As we continued along the trail, we came to Hurricane Creek, which runs the length of the preserve and is supported by dozens of tributaries. So it didn't take us long to abandon the trail and follow one of the creek beds up the mountain, slipping and sliding along mossy rock as we went.

And while there weren't countless flowers and berries blooming along the trails, I thought the loveliest such scene was not a wildflower at all, but fungus.

Orange Bracket Fungus at Moss Rock Preserve
After following the tributary for a while, we eventually ran into Powerline Trail, which then hooked up with the Blue Trail, which led us to the Great Wall. In an effort not to spoil it for you, I will only provide an abstract of that extraordinarily large boulder.

The Blue Trail led us to a connector trail, which hooked us up with the White Trail, which meandered its way back toward the car, but not before we had to stop for one more panoramic shot.

Blake and Darby taking one last look at Hurricane Creek

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