The Pakenham Hills were perfect for a field trip today — fresh, fluffy snow six inches deep that we could walk through easily, unusual rocks and logs to play on, and abundant dry firewood for a lunch fire. The forest was criss-crossed with tracks we identified as Coyote, Snowshoe Hare, White-tailed Deer, Fisher, and various small mammals — weasels, voles, mice, and shrews.
We saw three deer, too, and an immature Bald Eagle. Turkeys had kicked up the leaf litter right through the snow in several places; we thought they might have been looking for acorns. Late arriving members, coming in long after the rest of us had passed, reported startling a large flock of the big birds right on our trail: “They put their necks up straight, and then burst into the air!”
We visited the landowner’s cabin — he wasn’t home — and left a Christmas gift and card signed by all of us.