The trail was muddy in places, and a sheet of ice anywhere shaded by the pine trees and bare scrub oak. Tricky hiking, but nobody fell.
I love witnessing the observations of the natural world made by children. The youngest just turned five. She was excited to show me the eyelash grass. The photo shows blue grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis).
According to Johnston Seed Company, "Blue Grama reproduces only by seed, and as the seed heads mature, they usually bend into a curve that resembles a human eyelash."
The older two grandchildren love the nature center. They went methodically to every station, assembling educational puzzles and playing games. The five-year-old disappeared, scaring us for a moment. We quickly found her behind the bee display, watching bees fly through a clear plastic tube to their indoor hive.
I realized the best thing about the nature center in winter was that we did not have to share it with many people. Developing a love for the cold, barren season has the benefit of a selfish solitude.
If you have a hiking trail, walking path, nature center, or botanical garden in your area, have you made a winter visit lately?