Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Each animal leaves his trail exposed in the snow. Impressions left to remind me we have visitors all the time. The snow, a perfect medium for revealing who moved where. I love to look out our upstairs windows, after a fresh snow, where I have a wider view, and see the ribbon-like pathways that wind through the pine trees. I’m always on the look out for a unique one. A footprint that doesn’t look like one of the ones I’m use to. Our foxes are regulars and their size and gait give away there trail easily, as do the deer. The squirrels, smaller but distinct prints, are just as straightforward to identify. Then there is the little mouse, living between two stairs, which I didn’t know about but thanks to his winter explorations I do now. And of course the myriad of bird trails everywhere saying their little feet were exploring for seed.

But the prints I’m always on guard for are the mountain lion’s. It is such an illusive animal. It never fails to fascinate me. Even a hint of its presence brings the power of this animal to full focus. It conjures mystery, authority and intense power, even just with it’s footprints. I found them this last snow. I looked out the kitchen window and noticed the distance between prints was too long for our regulars. And they looked large. I got dressed and headed out for a closer look. As I bent over one I knew it was a mountain lion. There is an overall roundness to them, with a distinct size of three and one half to four inches in both width and length. I love knowing he walked by our home. That he left his impression and not just with his footprints.


No comments: