There are about five miles of woodland trails on our 165+ acre campus and I thought I’d better get started. Saturday was a beautiful day so I tried a one mile section. I flushed three white tail deer and encountered squishy reminders that there is an adjacent flood plain.
Sharp’s Run borders the south edge of the campus on its way to the southwest branch of Rancocas Creek. During last week’s rain the Run had risen enough to flood the entrance from Route 70, closing it for a while. The bridge above was undoubtedly under water.
For part of the trail I found myself on a steep-sided embankment well above the flood plain. Well, says the railroader, this is not a natural formation; there must have been a railroad through here. Sure enough, the 5.95 mile Mount Holly, Lumberton, and Medford Railroad served these communities and interchanged at Medford with the Camden and Atlantic (City) Railroad, ca 1870.
Anyway, the leaves above are one of the few spots of color remaining in the woods as we enter the unsaturated gray-brown, bare branch season. But, returning on a campus paved road there was an attractive colorful planting of winter pansies in front of drying grass plumes.
The unusual black-stemmed plant is a night-blooming globus electricus.
And a campus cluster of red berry provided a bright spot.