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Into The Outdoors: The beautiful Autumn Foliage

You know, September is one of my least favorite months. My favorites, of course, are May through August. The worst thing about September, I think, is the cold, hard reality that summer is over. The new life that was Spring is slowly being replaced by signs of death. However, this time around, I will refrain from whining and look at some positive things.

When it comes to beautiful autumn foliage, the area along the Allegheny River is pretty hard to beat. In fact, people travel long distances just to look at the leaves when they are in full color. Of course, that hasn’t happened yet. The leaves are mostly green, although spots of color are starting to show up. My backyard is getting more and more leaves, and about a third of the leaves on the burning bush are red. Bright orange is also showing up on my big sumac.

It never fails to impress me when the birds disappear. For example, the yard will be full of robins one day, and completely devoid of them the next. I know that some robins stay the winter, but the backyard ones disappear so suddenly. Also, the goldfinches, which stay all year, are turning brown, to the point where they are starting to look like sparrows. The hummingbirds have disappeared as well, except for a few stragglers. On the other hand, some of the birds that are not seen all that often in the summer are starting to show up. This is especially true of bluejays and chickadees. Non-migrating birds tend to show up at feeders in large numbers as winters begins its inevitable approach.

Here’s a little warning for those who drive on Route 68 through Brady’s Bend. Be careful around the Flood Memorial Park. Deer seem to congregate around there.

I have tried to allow space for a couple of photos from Dave Lewis. One is of a big, healthy bear on his property. The other is of the same bear’s footprint. This is the time when the bears are working to fatten up for their winter nap. Bird feeders, garbage cans, grills, etc. become more and more susceptible. Be sure to keep that in mind. The bruins are looking for food, and just about anything, including dirty diapers, will do.

In the near future, we will take a look at some often overlooked outdoor activities, such as weiner roasts, campfires and end of season cookouts.

For many years, around this time of year, my friend, East Brady poet Ann Moody would write an Autumn poem. Since her passing, I have missed this poetic opportunity. Consequently, here is a poem by my favorite American poet, Robert Frost. It really sums up the temporary nature of Autumn’s beauty.


Nature’s first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.

Her early leaf’s a flower’

But only so an hour.

Then leaf subsides to leaf,

So Eden sank to grief,

So dawn goes down to day

Nothing gold can stay.


Chris Henderson email:

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