I like to revisit places at different times of the year so that I can view the seasonal changes that take place. Last weekend I decided to return to Cordwood Landing in Miller Place. This time I selected the wider road that would provide a straight run to the Long Island Sound. It would be a shorter walk but I wanted to see what a different trail had to offer and I was also not up to struggling down and up the ravine located on the hiking trail. I was also alone in a place where the trails are not very clearly marked. Given my sense of direction, the straight path to the Sound was probably the wiser choice.
The lane I chose must have been a paved road at one time. Over time the asphalt had become uneven and washed out in spots, assaulted by the forces of nature. Not long into my journey I explored a side trail rising gently up a small hill. At the top, I discovered the remains of a concrete wall. I thought how eventually nature will reclaim the land, hiding the evidence of man-made monuments.
As I journeyed back towards the main trail, I found a rhododendron type tree in full bloom. Underneath the tree growth, I located a patch of Canada Mayflowers (also knows as False or Wild Lily of the Valley). This was my primary reason for my return here. I wanted to compare the blooms I had seen during my last visit during mid-summer and those of late Spring. This time around it was too early for raspberry flowers, Yarrow and Queen Ann’s Lace but I did find the bright yellow flowers of Wild Strawberries, as well as the blossoms mentioned above. In spring, even the Poison Ivy had a nice new shiny appearance!
Shortly after returning to the main trail, the way was blocked by a downed tree. I’m not sure if this old specimen was blown down during a strong windstorm or if the tangle of vines eventually caused the tree to weaken and fall. It did present an interesting image, though. I could imagine it as an entrance to some fantasy world filled with tiny woodland creatures causing mischief to those who invaded their space.
I found a walk-around, continuing on towards the Sound. It wasn’t long before I could see the water from the trail. The vegetation on either side of the path attracted different species of early butterflies. I also watched as a bird flitted about the surrounding trees. It had a dull yellow color with brown stripes along its back and wings. I could not identify it but I did enjoy watching him stay out of my reach. He obviously knew I was there, always jumping a little further away as I quietly approached.
Eventually I arrived at the beach. I walked along the water-line for a bit, watching the boats out on the Sound. I turned and contemplated the bluff. It was during our last walk here that we settled on a bench tucked away in the woods on the ridge, meditating on the scene below.