Saturday, April 13, 2013

Huntsville State Park Makes Thirteen

Breck and I headed over to Huntsville State Park and added a new state park (number 13) to our list 


Everything was so green and lush with the new leaves of spring.


The miles of trails are used by hikers, runners, and bikers alike with several small wooden bridges over the ditches and water ways.



Since we had fairly regular rainfall this fall and spring the small creeks were running with water.  This tree along one creek was a real treat.  Perfectly health canopy of leaves and branches, but completely hollow at the base.  In fact, it had a pool of standing water inside the trunk.


There was also a lake, a large one, that all the signs warned had alligators.


Did I mention is was an amazingly gorgeous day?  Look at that sky.


90% of our 5.5 mile hike was in the shady forest.




We also spotted several small critters.  This spider had made a nice little home of a curled leaf surrounded by his web.


And do you see the little red spider here?  He was a surprise.


And it seems it is caterpillar season.  They are everywhere.


Love the spikes.


And this little anole wasn't scared of me or my camera one bit until I got really close, and then he began to change color to camouflage with the stump.


The park is in the piney woods, so . . .


Pine tree roots are shallow, and in several spots the dirt has eroded away leaving them exposed.  Mountain bikers love the obstacles, buy if you are walking you will need to watch your step.


So many flowers.





I caught more than just spiders enjoying the flowers.


This was the strangest one we saw.  It is very large, and the petals were more like soft spikes.  This little carpenter bee was loving it.  Funny to see him since I had just asked my neighbor about the different types of bees this past week.


Here it is full sized standing about 30 inches tall.


I don't know what this guy was, but he was amazing.  Look at that armor and the huge eyes.   And I THINK those are carpenter bee holes in the pine bark.  They are the right size at 1/16 of an inch.


We could not have picked a better day to hike this park.  I hope the weather is just as nice next weekend when we go to another park in the Dallas area while there to help a friend celebrate a big birthday.

See more of our Texas State Park Adventures