I haven’t posted about our Friday morning hikes in a while. We still hike most Friday mornings. My kids look forward to these mornings as much as I do. They are awesome, and this year we committed to them-rain, sleet, snow, sun, cold or hot. My husband asked me this week if we actually learn anything on our Friday morning hike or if they are just for fun. Well, both answers are correct!
For the kids, Friday morning hikes allow for exploration in the areas that they hike with their classes. On Fridays, they explore freely. For me, Friday morning hikes fill my cup! I converse with my friends about history, herbs, life and so many topics. Overall, we all learn something new EVERY single week!
This week, we hiked with our area nature preserve manager. He is a walking nature encyclopedia. I really enjoy hiking with him. Today, we reviewed what poison ivy, plantain, and beech wood trees look like. We also found a Fowler toad, a slippery salamander, a five striped salamander, millipede, a cherry bug and hawk pellet (one of the amazing lessons learned today-how did we learn that we found a hawk pellet versus an owl pellet? An owl pellet has a lot of bones in it, but the hawk pellet did not have any bones in it).
We also discovered a spider nest in a fern. I love looking at ferns as I hike. Today, I noticed that several of the ferns had been rolled up with web around them. We plucked off one and investigated. Inside of the “fern ball” we found a spider! Fascinating hike today! We learned so many new things that I am still trying wrap my head around them such as when the Fowler toad grabs an insect with its tongue it uses its eyes to bring the insect from its mouth down into its stomach!
I am so glad that we have continued with the hikes. I was worried that the kids would get bored with them, but every week is a new adventure!