Wednesday’s snow made a fine job of delineating architecture along the Quarry Gardens’ main trail. Birds were active. Small animal tracks everywhere. The rock steps ascending the north side of the North Quarry pool were clearly defined. Here are a few more snow scenes:
The quarry pools remain partly frozen, with swathes of snow-covered ice, bare ice, and open water.
The Giant’s Stairs were a study in contrasts.
As were random soapstone boulders with marks left by gang-drilling.
A few days ago, while we were having breakfast, a pileated woodpecker darted among trees in front of the house. Given that these large birds claim many acres of territory, perhaps it was the same one who made these rectangular holes in a tall Virginia pine along the North Quarry trail. These holes, just 4-6 feet off the ground—and active—fresh chips on the snow—were likely made pursuing tunnels of wood-boring insects such as carpenter ants or beetles. Those made for nesting or roosting are rounder, only large enough for the birds to come and go—and much higher, 15 to 70 off the ground. We’ll see if another animal finds a use for these. (The tree is one of those our Giant lichen orbweaver spider used last summer. See July 26 post, in News Archives.)