Nature offered me a wonderful gift on Christmas. Christmas day, especially when it’s sunny out, is one of the best hiking days of the year. Trails are empty of other trekkers, yet the world feels full and magickal. My husband and I and our 3 dogs were out of the house by 10am to hike a local trail down to the Yuba River. By mid afternoon we had enjoyed our picnic, gotten our fill of stick throwing, and spent ample time simply basking in the sun.
We were returning up the trail, perhaps 70 feet above the river, when I realized that the dozens of red specks in the trail were ladybugs. Looking around, I started to see them everywhere. How had we missed them on the way down? There were piles of ladybugs at the base of the tall pines. Clusters of them all along the edge of downed logs. Herds of them crawling over rocks and lichen. Everywhere we looked over easily a quarter acre there were masses of ladybugs. It was by far the largest ladybug gathering I’ve ever seen!
The insect feet off to your right, in the photo framing this blog are ladybug feet. Some screens can see more of her, some can’t. It felt like a special nod of encouragement from Nature to stumble upon their Christmas gathering place.
Happy New Year, Everyone!