What better to do after some heavy rain than to go morel hunting! AGP and I dipped off to a spot Mark had showed us last week to see if any tasty, edible morels mushrooms had sprouted from the recent rain and warm weather. Our previous visit had been so dry! We were hoping that this particular jaunt would provide us with a bounty, although, we weren't holding our breath. Firstly, because neither AGP or I have any experience hunting for morels and secondly, Mark had told us that since the flooding the delta region had a couple years back, these sprouting beds had been covered up with silt and not many morels have been produced since.
Anyhow, it was a nice, damp day so we decided to talk a walk down to the White River delta to see what we could find.
|Looking east over the White River delta|
|Descending into the delta|
|Golden currant blossoms|
The White River delta is a strange and unique environment, boasting a micro-ecosystem with habitat, ecology, and even weather that is remarkably different than the short grass prairie and cattle grazing land that surrounds it. The recent rains had left it quite soft and muddy, albeit much greener than our last visit. 'Twas a very sticky mud, however, and it was quite a workout carrying around all that extra weight on our boots.
The geology of the area is pretty interesting as well. The bedrock of the local lazy, rolling hills is all Pierre Shale intermixed with silty alluivial (from the rivers) and eolian (from the wind) deposits. What we get to see in this riparian environment is stunning exposed bedrock consisting of heaps of blocky and fissile shale that seem to spill into the delta.
|The yellow calcareous claystone gives a nice burst of color|
|Where delta meets shale|
We did spot one mushroom! However, it wasn't a morel, so we let it be. We are expecting some more rain in the next couple of days, so maybe we will be luckier next time.
Hope you all are having a nice day and are exploring your world!