Patapsco Valley State Park Chevrolet Trail Loop

Hi everyone, I hope you had a good Easter!

Not being able to celebrate with family had me a little down yesterday. Thankfully, Kev knew exactly how to cheer me up. It took some pushing, but he got my butt out of the house and drove us up to Ellicott City. We finally got to try out the Chevrolet Trail Loop!

We arrived a little after 2:30 and it took us about 3 hours to hike the 6 mile loop. The map said there was about 500 feet elevation gain, but the gradual grade made it a much easier hike than the McKeldin Switchback.

Similar to the Mckeldin Switchback, there was plenty of plant diversity to be observed. My favorite find of the day was my first morel. We found two on our hike, one right beside the trail. We were astonished it hadn't been picked or trampled. I'm not very good at identifying fungus, so please take a look and suggest IDs if you are familiar!

A few of my recordings are of the same species found on the other side of the river, but I figured dropping location pins would still be beneficial for the Maryland Biodiversity and the Patapsco Valley State Park Projects. I also added several new species to my collection. As I find new species to record, I'm surprised how much plant taxonomy I'm able to recall from my time at Frostburg. Makes me wish I knew about this app when I had to take Field Practicals.

There was a number of lilies and other plants that were just starting to come up. Kevin and I plan to return to the park in about two weeks to see if they've blossomed. Still waiting on those May apples to pop.

I've finally added some critters to my collection as well. Josey (our 10 month old border collie) met his first snake during our run at a local community park. We came across a nest of garter snakes investigating a small stream. One of the snakes, oblivious to his surroundings, almost slithered right over Kev's foot. However once the snake caught visual of Josey, he quickly disappeared into the leafy brush. Josey was disappointed the snakes did not want to play with him.

A much different scenario than our snake encounter yesterday on our hike. The size of the baby garter snakes paled in comparison to the huge rat snake we almost mistaken as a large stick. This time, the snake did not hurry to get away and hide. Instead, he turned to face us and began rattling it's tail to mimic the warning of a rattle snake. Enjoying his sun bathing, he had no intention of giving up his spot for a couple of tourists. I grabbed a couple of pictures for my observation and then Kev carefully escorted the snake off the trail. Normally we would of left him alone, but there was a number of mountain bikers and we didn't want him to get squished.

I've included a link to our recording of the hike on my AllTrails account. We're both looking forward to returning soon. Definitely want to get there much earlier next time to see some birds. Also would like to find some salamanders. If anyone has tips on where to look, please comment below!
https://www.alltrails.com/explore/recording/recording-apr-12-05-35-pm-c133fb1

-Em

Posted by ehall1994 ehall1994, April 13, 2020 13:52

Observations

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True Morels Genus Morchella

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ehall1994

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April 12, 2020 05:33 PM EDT

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Dwarf Ginseng Panax trifolius

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April 12, 2020 05:25 PM EDT

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Virginia Waterleaf Hydrophyllum virginianum

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April 12, 2020 05:20 PM EDT

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Dutchman's Breeches Dicentra cucullaria

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April 12, 2020 05:15 PM EDT

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Field Horsetail Equisetum arvense

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April 12, 2020 05:12 PM EDT

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Spotted Geranium Geranium maculatum

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April 12, 2020 05:14 PM EDT

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Pale Corydalis Corydalis flavula

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April 12, 2020 03:42 PM EDT

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Drooping Star-of-Bethlehem Ornithogalum nutans

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April 12, 2020 03:36 PM EDT

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Jack-in-the-Pulpit Arisaema triphyllum

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April 12, 2020 05:20 PM EDT

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Cream Violet Viola striata

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April 12, 2020 03:29 PM EDT

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Showy Orchis Galearis spectabilis

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April 12, 2020 03:21 PM EDT

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Bloodroot Sanguinaria canadensis

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April 12, 2020 03:16 PM EDT

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Pennywort Obolaria virginica

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April 12, 2020 03:11 PM EDT

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Eastern Ratsnake Pantherophis alleghaniensis

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April 12, 2020 03:08 PM EDT

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April 12, 2020 03:04 PM EDT

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American Hornbeam Carpinus caroliniana

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April 12, 2020 03:04 PM EDT

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Shagbark Hickory Carya ovata

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April 12, 2020 03:03 PM EDT

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Yellow Trout Lily Erythronium americanum

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April 12, 2020 02:55 PM EDT

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Rue Anemone Thalictrum thalictroides

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April 12, 2020 02:53 PM EDT

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Roundleaf Ragwort Packera obovata

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April 12, 2020 02:41 PM EDT

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Lesser Periwinkle Vinca minor

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April 12, 2020 02:40 PM EDT

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European Lily of the Valley Convallaria majalis

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April 12, 2020 03:31 PM EDT

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Asters and Allies Tribe Astereae

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ehall1994

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April 12, 2020 03:15 PM EDT

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