Back In Berks County: Another Lake Ontelaunee Hike
On Saturday I returned to Berks County and made my third visit to Lake Ontelaunee. This 1,000 acre lake was formed by the damming of Maiden Creek in 1926 to provide a water supply for the City of Reading. (these are links to blog posts of my two prior visits. https://wp.me/p5GeDV-J2m https://wp.me/p5GeDV-s3K). After a 41 mile one hour drive I arrived at the Kindt Corner parking area on the west side of the lake. It was partly sunny with a temperature in the low 40’s at the trailhead.
I hoped to see some wildlife and maybe find some morel mushrooms and ramps. Once again I followed the main trail that was surrounded by large Norwegian pin, black walnut and oak tress. I left the main trail and took a fire road toward the lake.
Although they looked attractive, especially after the colorless winter forest floor, this plant, lesser celandine or fig buttercup , is an invasive species that endangers native wild flowers.
There were many bird singing in the tree tops but they were hard to see and photograph high up in the branches. I was able to capture a photo of this red-bellied woodpecker who ventured a little closer to the ground.
I continued my walk on the fire trails along the shore of the lake. I was hoping to see a lot more birds on my hike but for some reason they was not much bird activity. And most of it was high in the tree tops. A few black-capped chickadees did come within camera range.
I found a few of them and had fun dispersing some mushroom spores. This is a link to a you tube video I uploaded stomping on an old puff ball mushroom. https://youtu.be/7ye0sqkk7RQ
I walked on a fire road and came to a peninsula on the peninsula that juts out into the lake. Here I found a large flock of double-crested cormorants swimming in the water and perched on trees on an island in the lake.
On my return hike I was a little disappointed in not seeing more wildlife on my hike. However I saw an osprey fly
And, while photographing the osprey I saw this bald eagle in the distance. Well I didn’t find and ramps or morel mushrooms, and there wasn’t as much wildlife activity as I had hope, but any day I see a bald eagle in the skies is a great day of hiking for me. Here is a link to a gallery with more photographs from my hike. Lake Ontelaunee April 17 2021.
“Spring with its wavin’ green grass and heaps of sweet-smellin’ flowers on every hill and in every dale. “
– Roy Bean