Following Atticus: Forty-Eight High Peaks, One Little Dog, and an Extraordinary Friendship by Tom Ryan is published by William Morrow. It tells the story of my adventures with Atticus M. Finch, a little dog of some distinction. You can also find our column in the NorthCountry News.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Introducing Baby Red

I believe we are off to hike Caribou by the Mud Brook and Caribou trails today. It's over in Evans Notch, but with Hurricane Mountain Road open, the drive will be much shorter for us. And, if I am correct and North and South Baldface are actually in New Hampshire, this will be our first hike in Maine.

That's what June is about for us. We're not only trying to get off road and back to the basics of the vernal wood, but also to check out places we haven't been before.

This morning I received a photo of a rabbit in Belmont, Massachusetts, with the accompanying note that a coyote has been seen nearby. It's a reminder that nature exists everywhere. It also is a poignant setting for the fight for life and death. Coyotes have spread into civilized areas and need to eat to live. The rabbit, in order to live, must both avoid the coyote, but also the civilized world.

Here, through my backyard window, in front of which I type these days, I saw all the gaily chattering birds scatter in an instance when a hawk flew into view and landed on a tree branch overlooking their peaceful gathering. Last year a similar looking hawk dived into the yard and snatched up a woodpecker. The poor woodpecker let out a terrifying scream. It was the last noise it would ever make.

On the other end of the spectrum, Atticus knows not to kill the chipmunks for squirrels in the yard, but what fun he has in giving chase to them. All, that is, except Baby Red, who he is not allowed to chase. Baby Red is the newest member of our backyard cast of characters. And as you can see by the photo of Baby Red playing hide and seek: as cute as he or she is tiny. (I'm not sure who the two kissing red squirrels are, but I believe one is Baby Red's mother.)

1 comment:

Cindy said...

So adorable. My dog loves to give chase to the squirrels in our Brooklyn backyard...and the squirrels in turn love to sit just out of her reach! Happy hiking!