Through the Seasons

October 2017,

Since the last time I visited the site, much has changed in regard to the composition and vegetation. Two trees have fallen perpendicular to one another across the brook, causing the water to flow much closer to the ridge of the bank. The White Oak leaves of one tree have turned yellow-green, and the other boasts a more red-orange hue. The brook itself is blanketed with fallen leaves of deciduous trees, and the grasses across the brook have begun to wither and turn brown. The air is much cooler and crisp, and the sun sets much earlier in the day, with the soft light illuminating the golden leaves and reflecting off of spider webs. The layer of pine needles on the ground has been covered by piles of leaves from the deciduous trees.

Most of the evidence of wildlife in this location comes in the form of sounds. I hear the short, rhythmic chirp of a bird and the rustling of the leaves from chipmunks and squirrels, which I have seen several of. Only sometimes do I catch a glimpse of the wing of a bird as it takes off from the forest floor and into a nearby tree. The squirrels and chipmunks are busy gathering food or chasing one another around the trees. I see small fish dark across the sections of the brook lit up with sunlight. Aside from that I have yet to find any discernible animal tracks or crevices in logs formed by birds.

(Photos and map by Bre Ellis)

November 2017,

Since the last visit to my site, the tones of the forest have shifted from orange, yellow, and red to varying shades of taupe and brown. The Norway maple still has its green leaves with black tar spots, but the White Oaks have dropped all of their leaves, which now coat the forest floor or drift down the brook. The brook itself occupies more space on the bed and is much stronger-flowing than during my last visit. Underneath the fallen tree laying across the brook perpendicular to where I sit has formed a dam-like build-up of fallen leaves and sticks, which has created a small funnel creating a more concentrated flow of water and frothy bubbles that float downstream. The chipmunks are much less active than my pervious visits, and the sounds of my place is occupied with the bubbling of the brook rather than the chirping of chipmunks.

(Photos and map by Bre Ellis)

December 2017,

The shift from November to December was much more subtle at my site in comparison to the transitions between the previous months. The brook remains along the same path of flow, and the same fallen trees remain. The leaves, however, are now mostly fallen, and those that do hang on are brown and crisp, curled and ready to be blown from their branch. The only remaining green is that of the needles of the hemlocks and the pines, and the occasional fern along the ground.

(Photos by Bre Ellis)