In the south Puget Sound region of Washington State, one of the best, little nature hikes can be found in Tumwater Falls Park, located just off the freeway in Tumwater. Don’t expect the sounds of silence, though, as you hike the short trails on either side of the Deschutes River. A series of cascading falls sends the last roars of the river that began its journey in the Cascades into its final, quiet resting place in Capitol Lake.
I like to visit the park during autumn. Big Leaf Maples line the banks of the river and turn a golden color. Their leaves are humungous and always make for great, photo subject matter. Also along the river are fish ladders to help the salmon climb the several levels of falls.
Growing under the Japanese Maple tree, I found these bright yellow mushrooms that I’ve never seen before. At first appearance, they looked like lemon rinds, but then I realized they were a type of fungi.
Just across the street from the park, I came across another variety of maple tree with their colors of the season. These leaves exhibited gorgeous, pink colors.
And here is one that was just starting to turn with really gorgeous, pastel colors.
Lastly, I came across some fallen, red maple leaves on some silvery Dusty Miller plants. It made for the perfect color contrast and texture. I lingered here and took in the beauty of all the colorful leaves that Mother Nature was displaying. One never needs to go very far to marvel at her works this time of year.
© Peggy A Thompson