We're back from camping at Little Buffalo State Park near Harrisburg. It was the only park where we could get a site that would accept dogs, as Domino (the official dog of my political blog) was coming along. Who knew that all the campgrounds would be so full? I guess everyone's too broke to go on a "real" vacation, so everyone in PA is camping.
We hiked, we played in the creek, we fished, we saw lots of birds (37 species, including a lifer!), and I made LOTS of fires. I mean LOTS. I had to make a fire every time we wanted to cook, and in between meals we left the site so it always had to be put out. That's a fire Friday night, three fires Saturday, and two fires on Sunday. I never thought I'd say this, being a bit of a pyro and all, but I'm TIRED of making fires!
Here are a few snapshots of what we did and saw:
Gretchen and I fishing:
Of course, the fish is maybe 5 inches long....
A Box Turtle (Thanks, John, for the ID):
A baby American Toad (thanks to Katdoc for the ID):
My best-ever look at an Eastern towhee:
Domino, Gretchen, Em, and me playing in the creek:
A red admiral, which is Julie Zickefoose
's favorite butterfly:
There were swallowtails everywhere:
Eastern Kingbird--this isn't a great pic, but I had much better looks at him while gawking and forgetting to take pictures (thanks John and Katdoc on the positive ID):
UPDATED! Here's a second even worse photo, showing just a touch of white in the tail--per John's comment:
Kat and Gretchen decided we needed to hike the most difficult trail, despite my pleas that I would have a heart attack:
Cooling off and skipping rocks in the creek:
Somehow I made it to the summit, although I was almost a goner several times along the way!
There were a lot of ducks on the lake, but only one kind, it seemed:
Are these gadwalls? Sadly, no--per comments, they are just mallards with the drakes out of breeding plumage. Already in their travelling clothes for the fall migration! Gretchen insisted they were a commune of lesbian mallard hens, but they didn't have the purple patches. Turns out she was kinda right!
Whew--I'm exhausted just remembering it all. The nights were cool, but days sure were hot.
The rest of the photos will be presented as a special treat: Kat will be doing a guest post on our Saturday evening fishing trip! She says she's calling it "Fishing Face." I don't know what she's talking about.