"Come Walk with Me"
On Wednesday, Feb. 13, I asked my friend Sue if she wanted to come exploring Como Lake Park with me. Yes, it was cold but we both have a love of the outdoors and Sue isn't afraid of a little snow! I even brought my snowshoes hoping to give her a lesson and get in a little snowshoe time myself, but the trail was too uneven with huge slabs of ice from Cayuga Creek. We drove through the whole park to see what was there, it's pretty much a 'picnicey' type of place, not too many trails, but then we are visiting in winter and need to find out more. We explored one trail labeled "Boy Scout Trail" and I have a picture of the sign here. From the time we started out and returned it was only one hour, we didn't get to do the whole loop, our toes were getting too cold and we started having thoughts of hot cocoa!
There are many views at this park, where I could see I'd like to teach a landscape painting class and my nature sketching classes. The creek is great and reminds me of my walks to the Susquehanna River where I grew up, except that was MUCH larger than this creek!
You can see I'm drawing with my small sketchbook, my bag is slung across my shoulder mailman style so I can get at everything easily. (Sorry the picture is dark). My small camera is attached to the strap, as is my sandpaper block, a compass, and a tiny bottle of pepper spray! Ahhmmm yes ladies, you should be carrying this or something like it when hiking, and try to never hike alone, there are too many weirdos out there, yes I've met some!
You can see on my sketchbook page, I started by drawing a square in the center of the page. I stuck a post it note in the back of my sketchbook to use for tracing a perfect square. It's fun to add some design elements to your pages sometimes. You can then draw whatever you want to highlight in the box, and fill around it with little sketches, notes, tracks etc. I decided to sketch behind it a view of Cayuga creek looking south, you can see this view in the picture of me looking straight across the creek. Remember it's cold, and even wearing flip back mittens (as my friend in England recommended!) I still had to draw very fast. Especially when hiking with a friend, I feel more pressured to 'hurry up'.
I found a Hawthorne tree and noted several birds that I heard. At the end of our walk, I heard a loud woodpecker call, we stopped and watched for awhile and then saw a big Pileated Woodpecker fly out through the high branches! It was exciting! Perhaps the large, fresh woodpecker holes I took pictures of, were from this one? Here's a link for Como Lake Park with how to get there and picnic info etc. http://www.erie.gov/parks/como.asp (if link doesn't work, I've listed it in my links column to the left, under Buffalo nature links.)