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outdoors Photography Places

A tad more fall

I do have other Fall photos, from Elephant Rocks, Shaw, Forest Park and more, but I’ve had little time to prepare them, or think of what to write to accompany them. I’ll post most of the photos eventually at Tinfoil. I need to start becoming more selective, though. One really satisfying picture makes more of a statement than several good enough photos and one truly satisfying photo.

I did receive a surprise when driving through Iron County, past the homes with the old Confederate flags out front–several Kerry/Edwards signs. No Bush signs, but plenty of those green and white “Jesus” signs, and that’s about the same as a “Vote for Bush” sign in these parts.

“In these parts”

I have gone native. At Johnson Shut-Ins, which is always so much friendlier than Elephant Rocks, several people ‘sayed hallo’ as they passed; commenting on my walking stick, or if I’ve had good luck with the photos today. I noticed that when I answered, I sounded like someone born and bred in the backwoods of Missouri. Or, as I should say, Missoura.

Missour-a. Halleluj-ah. Okay, now I get it.

Saturday was a broken sunny day, a wonderful drive to Elephant Rocks and The Shut-Ins. The Fall color has peaked, though, as it has for most of the state. Only the deeps of the Ozarks might still have it. After I take what photos I can of the mills and the last bit of fall foliage, we’ll be into winter. Then I’ll be leaving my camera at home and focusing just on the hikes and walks.

Sunday I went to Shaw, and on the way impulsively stopped by Purina Farms to see if I could take photos of cats. The Farm was closed, preparing for a Halloween bash later that afternoon. I decided to go to it, and killed time until they opened at Shaw and exploring Highway 100 (or is it Route 100) that leads from Gray Summit.

I just followed whatever road looked good, and ended up driving past one of the most beautiful golf courses I’d ever seen, with homes on the hills above it that must have been 6000 square feet, at a minimum. It was beautiful, but I’ve never understood why anyone needs a house that big.

I ended up on a very narrow road that went up a steep hill, full of curves, and I gulped a few times coming around some of the corners. I spotted a Conservation Area I hadn’t heard of, Engelmann Woods I believe it was, and stopped to walk around a bit.

It was a pretty area with an easy trail, covered in dry, fallen leaves. Up ahead I spotted the bright red splash of color that you get with Poison Ivy this time of year. Which is good because as the trail progressed, the Poison Ivy got much thicker, and much harder to avoid.

Of course, Poison Ivy leaves also fall off, and sure enough many of the leaves I was walking through were Poison Ivy. That ended my walk, but I’m glad to say, I didn’t get any exposure from the plants. It sure was a pretty day, though, with warm weather and a cool breeze, and hearing the sound of the dry leaves underfoot. Is there any sound better than the swish crackle of walking a trail inches deep with dry fall leaves?

When I got back to the car, two Harleys were parked next to it, and I grabbed a picture of them because, well, they were Harleys.

From there, I headed back down the curvy road, which is much more interesting, and back past the mega-homes to Purina–just in time for the Duck Herding show, but that’s for another post because it’s late and I’m tired.