Over the last weekend, a crowd of DC EcoWomen and friends took advantage of the beautiful weather and headed outdoors for a fun-filled and educational afternoon with naturalist Amanda Campbell in Turkey Run Park, Virginia. As we gathered for introductions and conversation, everyone was excited to learn about the local flora and share their own personal and professional hiking experiences. Needless to say, everyone was happy to escape the city for a few hours and enjoy the great outdoors.
As we started our climb up the first hill, we were reminded that spring in DC has sprung earlier than in recent years and that this would mean that the wildflowers might have already peaked for the season. Undaunted, we began the journey eager to “see what we would see,” according to Amanda. Although still within earshot of the cars and planes, we quickly found ourselves amidst a forest of trees, with fresh green leaves blowing in the breeze and covering the landscape with dancing shadows. The path then led us down toward the gurgling sounds of the Potomac, where lo and behold – the wildflowers abounded. Amanda showed us all kinds of different plants that lined the path, including a few invasive species.
After a few creek crossings, we rested and snacked on sack lunches alongside the river. As we adventured onward, wildflowers may have stolen the show, but they certainly weren’t the only things caught our attention. In fact, beetles, spiders, and even a snake were among the surprises that met us along the way. Upon finishing our walk, we came away with some enriching natural history, big smiles, and new friendships. Many thanks to Amanda Campbell for sharing her knowledge and enthusiasm with the group!
Check out Flickr for more fun photos.