So rain on the mountain ended on Sunday and I’m still posting photos of rain-soaked things. Perhaps that is just an indication of how long it has been since the mountain had seen rain. It’s also an indication that the mornings are now too dark again for photography, and I’m still not adjusted to photographing things in the evenings again. And also, I really liked the raindrops on this late-blooming jewelweed.
My evenings include a lot of dog walking and chicken care, such as feeding my little angels and then washing the day’s offering of eggs. By the time all that is done and dinner eaten and cleaned up after, well, it’s starting to get dark pretty early in the evenings, now too.
The evenings are still pretty active with animal and bird life. Now that darkness intrudes both earlier and later, I hear the great-horned owl and the screech owl nearly every night or morning. Last evening the screech owl sounded very close. For a few minutes I thought it might be in a tree just above the chickens, so I went outside to see if I could find it, but again, no I could not. I’ve only ever seen a screech owl in the wild a few times, though I’ve heard them hundreds of times. I don’t see great horned owl all that often either, though I see them a lot more frequently than I have the screech owls.
Birds and animals are busy in the forest now. Activity at my feeders is picking up. I see the fox pair at least once a week. Squirrels are seemingly everywhere, nearly always with a mouthful of nuts. Although fall is still officially a week away, the mountain has felt rather fall-like for almost a week. It sure is a relief after this past summer, which is officially now the second hottest summer on record in this area. And yes, I do remember the hottest summer ever in 1968. I was marching in a 4th on July parade with the high school band and very clearly remember passing under a bank time and temperature sign that said 106 degrees. I sort of hope that having survived the hottest and second hottest summers ever that I don’t have to experience either of those situations again in my lifetime.