Griffy Lake Adventure in Spring: With Snake! and Great Blue Heron!

Puppy Shadow and I hadn’t been to Griffy Lake — see it? Directly north of SR 45/46 —

— for over a month. Back then, it was still winter. With snow! I knew that once spring finally did take hold it would explode into green. And yes, indeed, it certainly has.

I’m always a bit leery of forest trails in summer, due to poison ivy (I didn’t see any), and both big and litttle ticks. But we decided to brave it. How could we not?

Here we start, up the trail, past sinewy fallen logs that remind me of snakes, symbols of renewal, resurrection . . . so often in my dreams through the years, I’ve encountered snakes . . .

Oops! There’s a snake!

In all my years walking trails here, I have never, ever, seen a live snake. This one is small, motionless. I stop to take a picture.

Oops! He (she?) sees me too, and starts pulling back into the crack, tongue flicking . . .

. . . until just his (her?) head is visible.

And even after the head slid back under, I can see him (her?) still staring at me, flicking . . .

Exciting for me, to see/feel this beautiful symbol of new life while walking into intense spring green. But: is it poisonous? I have no idea. I heard about two dogs  that were bitten by a timber rattlesnake in nearby woods just yesterday. One of them has died.

I decide to keep Shadow on a leash. Stay on the trail!

We look out through trees at the top of the hill —

— walk along the winding path, for maybe a half mile, then start down, to the stream that leads into Griffy.

Beauty, beauty, beauty everywhere.

In a moment of inattention, I hear a splash. Is that Shadow?

Or is that a crocodile. (No. They are not present this far north. At least not yet!)

I can’t help but notice sinewy patterns everywhere in nature, reminding me of snakes . . . Even wood sometimes grows that way. As they say, “Nature abhors a straight line.”

Clearly, Nature loves tangles, too.

And so many plant species like to crowd together. Not for them this human way of placing plants — and houses — far apart . . .

Plants like each other! Can we humans learn to like each other, too?

But the theme of coiling, spiralling especially caught my eye yesterday. Shown so obviously in the way a stream will wander, if left alone.

On our way back to the Lake we ran into a large, gentle older man with a gentle, uncut brown male pit bull dog. To me, they not only belonged together, they reminded me of each other, even shared the same essence. I told him so, in just those words. He looked surprised — then thanked me, clearly moved. And said that the dog had just arrived one day, on his doorstep. Wish I had taken their picture.

As we started to walk away, he said to look for the blue heron in the lake, close to shore. So we did. Hard to see. But there!

Can you see him? Directly below the bush on the other side of the lake shore? Framed by a branch with two small dead branches? Okay, I’ll zoom in.

What a morning! I feel so blessed.

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4 Responses to Griffy Lake Adventure in Spring: With Snake! and Great Blue Heron!

  1. Ellen Jacobi says:

    Ann,
    The images you have shared are beautiful. What a wonderful and full experience meeting snake and herron at Griffey. It is a beautiful campus there but it pales in comparrison to the surrounding profusion of nature there. I have a spiritual connection to the area as well having gone to summer camp as a child and going to college there as a young adult, spending time in Yellowood as often as possible. It is God’s country, magnificent and glorious. I often see the heron and l am always in awe of his majestic presence. I suppose it would be natural for me to feel that way having Neptune conjunct the ascendant.
    l am so glad you had such a wonderful day in nature and connecting to her message and wisdom. Thank you for sharing your experience.

    • Ann Kreilkamp says:

      Thanks, Ellen. We are bathed in beauty, especially in spring. And ESPECIALLY, when spring is delayed so very long. If you visit B’town, stop by! We could walk in Griffy — or Yellowwood — together.

  2. Yes, per your question, there are many beings, including faeries, in the photos — more felt than seen, but some seen. 🙂

    Interestingly, I saw a snake a couple weeks ago by our mailbox. I reached down to weed out some of the fall leaves from the irises and saw a pale green something that looked like part of a hose. I thought, “Hmmm, I don’t recall seeing a hose that color before.” I reached to grab it, and then it moved! It was about 1 inch across, maybe 3-4 feet in length — hard to tell when hidden in plants.

    I’d seen a garter snake here once, the day I had contemplated buying a fake snake to keep critters out of the garden. Just after our locksmith left and before I ordered a faux serpent, this garter snake came out of nowhere and climbed UP the outside doors whose locks he had just replaced, touching its head to the locks and seemingly doing some kind of blessing. I could not get into the house until it finished and slithered away.

    Yesterday I saw a bald eagle fly over our car in Manistee, MI, a rare piping plover the day before on the beach at Ludington, and fox keeps showing up in so many photos, stories and displays. Lots of animal wisdom and beauty! Glad you had a beautiful walk. 🙂

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