Another season, another hike at Tifft Nature Preserve! I can’t believe that we’ve come full circle and hiked here in every season. (If you missed previous Tifft hikes, check them out: winter, spring, summer.) What I’ve decided after hiking here all year is that Tifft was beautiful in every season, but I like it best in the fall.
We started with our customary boots-on-the-trail shot. I’m loving my new hiking boots. I had a pair of Merrells for awhile and never really felt comfortable in them. After awhile I’d had enough with slipping around in my hiking boots and went to get fitted for a new pair. What I learned, thanks to the very knowledgeable shoe saleswoman at EMS, was that Merrells have a wide heel box, which didn’t work for my narrow feet at all. Now I’m all hooked up with a pair of Oboz Lunas and they’re perfect.
Anyway, leaving aside the shoe chatter and getting back to the important stuff – we had a great hike. The sky was a little gray, but the air was perfectly crisp.
We headed right for our favorite part of Tifft – the boardwalks!
Where we saw a few dozen Canadian geese, still hanging out before they start journeying south for the winter.
And we had company for this hike! Zan and Paul are quickly becoming our favorite hiking buddies. Together we’ve visited Chestnut Ridge (in the dead of winter, no less!), Letchworth, and on Sunday (before the football game, of course) they were up for a stroll around Tifft (which they’d visited last fall). We’re plotting an excursion to the Eternal Flame, hopefully in the not-too-distant future, so stay tuned for that.
By the time we left the boardwalks, Peanut was starting to get a little twitchy, so we let her out of the Deuter to stretch her legs.
She was pretty happy to have her freedom.
Of course, our hiking pace slowed waaaaaaay down when Peanut’s pink Sauconys hit the trail. We spent a lot more time herding her in the direction we wanted her to go, chasing her away from bushes, and dodging the sticks she loves to grab and wave around.
Peanut really wanted to explore down this little trail, but we knew it was a dead end without much scenery, so we very heartlessly ignored her requests.
She always forgives and forgets.
Peanut loves Zan! They’re buddies.
We saw some more wildlife – this deer wasn’t alone! I know most people hate deer, but I love them – so graceful. Talk to me in a couple of years when I have an established garden and I might have a different opinion, though.
And we attempted to take a family selfie – another tradition of ours – at the end of the hike, but Peanut was having none of it. She was angry at being put back in the backpack, and her way of protesting was to pull her hood down like Emperor Palpatine. Well played, Peanut, well played.
And so ends four seasons of hiking at Tifft Nature Preserve! It’s been a lot of fun to visit each season, watch the place change over the course of the year, and make the trails our own. We didn’t even get lost this time! (Fourth time’s the charm.) I’m sure we’ll be back to Tifft plenty of times in the future – now that we know our way around, we can’t possibly stay away for long. But we’ve also had so much fun hiking the same trails in every season that we’ve decided to continue the project next year at Reinstein Woods Nature Preserve in Depew. We haven’t hiked there yet, so we’re looking forward to seeing it in every season in 2015!
What’s your favorite season for hiking?