Karma's When I Feel Like It Blog

October 14, 2012

Walking Along

Filed under: Uncategorized — Karma @ 5:15 pm
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Back in the summertime, Robin of Life in the Bogs announced plans for taking a really long walk.  I think at the time she was blogging about pilgrimages and her admiration for folks who do them.  Robin’s plans for her walk,  while maybe not completely a pilgrimage-length walk, but a good long walk, blossomed into the idea for a blog-along style walk in which bloggers were invited to make a jaunt of their own, photograph it, blog it and link it to Robin’s post.

I actually took two walks for this blog.  I took one on Columbus Day, but those photos proved to be disappointing.  The weather was extremely overcast, and while I know cloudy days can make for some beautiful photos, this day it just wasn’t working for me.  I wanted photos of a golden autumn afternoon, and even after adjusting settings on the camera to warm up the shots, they were mostly blah looking to me.  I also walked in an unfamiliar place, and although the paths were well-marked, I started feeling just a bit nervous about whether I’d chosen the correct direction at times.  Not all of my pictures from this day are bad and unusable – they just aren’t what I wanted for this post.  Perhaps they will find a place in a different post.

For this walk, I headed to The Rice Nature Preserve here in the town where I live.  I’d walked this trail one time before with the family and dogs in tow.  This time I went on my own so that I could take plenty of pictures without my hands be jostled by anxious pulling on leashes.

The day was full of sunshine, although high temperatures were only in the upper 50’s.  The vigorousness of parts of this walk soon had me plenty warmed up!  I’d forgotten some parts of the trek were rather steep – it is up the side of our little mountain afterall.

I was lucky to find one trail map left at the entrance to the path and excitedly began my trek.

Beginning of the path

Parts of the path were rocky
a little rocky along the way

and others were leafy
leafy path

but in all of it I found beauty.
wildflowers with blurry bee


mystery berries

Near the top of the trail (but not the very top) I emerged into a peach orchard with beautiful views of the town below.

Wilbraham has always been known for its peaches. Since I was in high school, each summer brought us “The Peach Festival” presided over by the Peach Queen and her court. Unfortunately, not all of the acres once owned by the Rice family are still farmed. I don’t know if these particular orchards are still cared for and harvested. I found it so strange to see these peach pits hanging from some of the trees:
peach pits

The trails continued past the peach orchard to a bench placed in memorial of the couple who started Rice’s Fruit Farm in town.
It reads: “Life has taught us that love does not consist of gazing at each other, but looking outwards together in the same direction.”
Nice sentiment. The view from the bench:


That ended up being the highest elevation from which I took a photo. I did continue further along a connecting trail which promised to lead me to Sunrise Peak.
on the way to the summit

But when I got to a junction on this path, it wasn’t clear which way I should follow. I tried using my sense of direction with the placement of the sun and the trail map, but I chose wrong. I came to a dead end made unpassable from fallen trees and limbs, most likely from the devastating tornado that passed through this area in June of 2011. I turned back. At one point along the path, I ran into a couple of hikers and their pup who I’d chatted with briefly a couple times and they had learned the peak was in the opposite direction than the one I’d chosen. By that time, I was getting a little too tired to try again, so I decided to save it for another day. I’d been out for nearly two hours and had plenty of photos to share, so I didn’t feel unsatisfied with my choice.

Warm sunshine lead me back down the path.
sunshine through trees

Thanks, Robin, for hosting this blog-along. I’ll look forward to checking out everyone’s walks!


  1. That was you who texted me! I suspected so but didn’t have you stored in my phone. I wouldn’t have been much help if I had seen the texts in time since I’ve never gone beyond the bench. A lovely day for your trek. I was at the Quabbin taking pictures.

    Comment by Becky Sue — October 14, 2012 @ 6:07 pm | Reply

    • Yup, it was me! It was a nice day. I’m sure we’ll see some of your Quabbin pictures soon?

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:17 pm | Reply

  2. Beautiful pictures at the top Karen..I’ve never seen those paths. They look lonely! Love the one looking down the hill with the birdhouses.

    Comment by trish49 — October 15, 2012 @ 6:52 am | Reply

    • Thank you. I don’ think these paths have always been there. I’m pretty sure they came to be when the Rice family sold some of that land.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:19 pm | Reply

  3. A beautiful walk! I think the temperatures on that day were about perfect for a brisk walk, and the sunshine has that golden autumn glow.

    Comment by Carol — October 15, 2012 @ 1:08 pm | Reply

    • Thank you Carol – it was one of those golden afternoons that I was looking for.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:19 pm | Reply

  4. Quelle belle promenade, Karen ! J’aime la variété dans tes photos, les vues de paysages plus vastes, les détails de la végétation et cette découverte d’une citation d’Antoine de St-Exupéry (Le Petit Prince, tu as lu ?). J’aurais aimé aussi m’y promener. Merci pour tes impressions et descriptions.

    Comment by isathreadsoflife — October 15, 2012 @ 3:05 pm | Reply

    • Merci, Isa! Oui, j’ai lu Le Petit Prince – en francais. Je me souviens.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:22 pm | Reply

  5. Oh, this is a GORGEOUS walk, Karma. This looks like a place I would love to visit. The bench and quote brought tears to my eyes (those dedicated benches always do because I tend to stop and think about the people they are dedicated to). You found so much beauty along the way, but that last shot… stunning. I am so glad you suggested this as it has given me the opportunity to go from sharing my walks to enjoying the walks of others. 🙂

    Comment by Robin — October 15, 2012 @ 5:30 pm | Reply

    • Thanks Robin, and thanks again for sharing your idea to walk a longer distance than we usually do. I always think about getting out and doing different walks, but now because of you I’ve done two that I might not have otherwise done. I love dedicated benches. I think a bench in a lovely place is actually a much nicer remembrance than a headstone.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:24 pm | Reply

  6. Thanks for letting me tag along Karma. It was a lovely walk.

    Comment by sybil — October 15, 2012 @ 6:53 pm | Reply

    • Glad you enjoyed it Sybil. Maybe next time we can walk with all the dogs 😉

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:24 pm | Reply

  7. Thanks for taking me along! What a nice walk amid the trees and peach (pits) and sunshine. A good idea, I wish I had gone for a long walk too! 🙂

    Comment by Dawn — October 15, 2012 @ 9:40 pm | Reply

    • Its never too late to get in a nice walk. Thanks – I’m glad you liked mine.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:26 pm | Reply

  8. […] took us Walking Along at the Rice Nature Preserve where she found the beauty in nature, as well as some great views. […]

    Pingback by Everybody’s walking « Life in the Bogs — October 16, 2012 @ 4:00 pm | Reply

  9. Hello Karma
    I’m glad you suggested we join Robin in a group walk. I’ve enjoyed walking with you. I think you’re brave going on your own.
    I really like the picture with the leaves on the path.

    Comment by dearrosie — October 17, 2012 @ 1:01 am | Reply

    • Hi there Rosie. Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I’d never feel uncomfortable walking alone in this town. I grew up here, but I do always take my phone with me just in case!

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:27 pm | Reply

  10. Hiya, I’ve dropped over from Robin’s blog to join you on your walk.
    You found a lovely place to walk, and took some beautiful pictures of it too.
    Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    Comment by Sallyann — October 17, 2012 @ 2:41 am | Reply

    • Hi Sallyann. Thank you and thanks for dropping by! I’m planning to make the rounds of the walks from Robin’s post soon.

      Comment by Karma — October 17, 2012 @ 9:29 pm | Reply

  11. What a nice walk! Looks like you enjoyed yourself AND took some beautiful pictures. Is there a deadline for Robin’s walk challenge? Not sure about finding the time to put this together right now, but your post is super inspiring. (And I must get over and visit Robin. Am so behind in blog-reading. Attempting to catch up this weekend.)

    Comment by Kathy — October 19, 2012 @ 6:53 pm | Reply

    • Oh–and must go for a short mile-long hike right now before it gets dark!

      Comment by Kathy — October 19, 2012 @ 6:54 pm | Reply

      • Thank you Kathy. I’m pretty sure Robin’s blog along walks were for the time you were in California for the wedding. She has already written a wrap-up post, but you know that we would always be happy to pop over to LSS and read about one of your walks. You always seem to encounter wonderful things on your walks! 🙂

        Comment by Karma — October 20, 2012 @ 8:53 am

    • You missed it, Kathy. Sorry. 😦 But I think we’ll be doing another one in the spring. 🙂 In the meantime, Karma is right. I, too, always enjoy reading about one of your walks.

      Comment by Robin — October 20, 2012 @ 10:33 am | Reply

  12. Reading about hikes always makes me want to jump up off the chair I’m sitting on and head out hiking Karen! I’m going to visit our local tourist information centre next week and see if they have a pamphlet on hiking trails in our area, (there must be one available!) I live in an area well known for its beaches and hiking is rarely mentioned. By the time Robin holds her next blog hike in the spring, I will be all prepared. I missed out this time, but enjoyed visiting your area, seeing the views and the changing colours of the leaves. 🙂

    Comment by Joanne — October 20, 2012 @ 6:00 pm | Reply

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the walk. I’ll be curious to see what you find out about hiking in your area. I’d love to see photos of what you encounter. You could probably start your search on the internet. One of the people I met I on my hike was actually following hiking directions on his smartphone.

      Comment by Karma — October 21, 2012 @ 8:38 am | Reply

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