Sunday, December 14
John Heinz Wildlife Refuge
You probably haven't heard of it or you haven't been there, but John Heinz is an awesome nature space in Philadelphia. A large round trail surrounds a lake and surrounding wetlands are home to great blue herons, egrets, barn swallows, owls, wild turkeys, shore birds, ducks, geese, plus the woodland trails and birds like black capped chickadees, juncos, nuthatches, downy woodpeckers, goldfinches. They keep a list at the desk of birds sighted that day. They have a huge education center that won many awards for green and sustainable design and they have nature walks every weekend. You can bring your dog, use the new wheelchair accessible part of the trail across the boardwalk/bridge, or hike all the way around, which takes quite a while, especially if your stopping to look at things on the way, which I recommend.
Today I stopped by to drop off my photographs at the gift shop (stop by and support the refuge!) and take pictures. The sky was beautiful and the winter takes away the foliage and the big birds, but you can suddenly see the architecture of the trees, the fungus growing on decomposing trunks, the rocks on the beach, the seed heads of dormant plants and the icy water reflects the blue sky.