Here are pictures from our hike at Walnut Mountain Park in Liberty, New York. Any picture can be clicked on to enlarge it. (I wanted to keep them small since there are so many.) This is not the park's real name, at least, it isn't on the map. But it's at the end of Walnut Mountain Road off of route 55. It's amazing we could find anything in this area, since nothing is clearly marked. We did have a wonderful time exploring the trails.
You do need to hear the story of this black beetle. As I was taking pictures I noticed a scratchy feeling on my calf. I felt a lump under my jeans and thought a burr or thistle must have worked its way up under my pants, so I rolled up the leg and nearly jumped out of my skin when I saw this 1.25 inch long beetle! (My husband thought he was looking at the head of a snake, so he jumped too.) Hubby carefully used a rock to lift it away and put it on the ground, but the darned thing decided to fly back at me and began climbing up my leg toward my shirt. We took a picture (Why yes, I'm a blogger) and then my husband knocked it to the ground again. I figured I would take more pictures, but it wouldn't stay still. It kept crawling toward me. At one point, it climbed onto my sneaker and wouldn't let go. I decided extra pictures weren't worth being stalked by a beetle, so I stepped around it and we headed off down the path. It's probably still looking for me.