The holidays are over, the days are still a little grey, and the winter doldrums are beginning to set in. I have two options: wallow in my house and wait for the sun to shine, or venture out into the cold and face the winter head on. I’m here to tell you that the latter ALWAYS does the trick. There isn’t anything a little bit of movement and fresh air can’t fix!
My go-to spot for a winter walk is the North Fork Audubon Society in Greenport, otherwise known as Inlet Pond County Park. The park offers about 1.5 miles of trail, which is perfect for a short jaunt, even when it’s pretty chilly. About ten minutes into the walk, you’ll come across a viewing platform overlooking the pond, which is a great spot for a rest or a beverage break. Keep your eyes peeled for the swan couple that call this pond home. If you’re lucky they might even pose for a photo with your drink!
While most of the trails meander through forest and shrubberies, there is a stretch that traverses the sandy beach along the Long Island Sound. One of my favorite pastimes is collecting sea glass, and this seldom-traveled beach does not disappoint. Spend a few quiet minutes collecting your treasures and then snap a shot for your Instagram story. Just be sure you don’t post the location tag, you don’t want to give up your secret treasure-hunting spot!
Towards the end of the trail, depending on which loop you choose, you may come across a strange structure. Opposite a bench, you’ll find a wooden wall with a few square openings scattered at different heights. It doesn’t look like much, so you might be inclined to walk on by, but sit down on the bench or peer through one of the openings and you’ll be greeted by another beautiful sight. Behind the wall is a hidden pond where you may spot a turtle or even a muskrat, so be very quiet while taking in the view. I recommend taking this opportunity to take one last photo! If you sit down on the bench and position your camera or phone just right, the view through the opening will almost look like a painting of the forest hanging on a wall. A neat trick of the woods!
The North Fork Audubon Society was founded in 1971 and has been run nearly entirely by volunteers ever since. This group of volunteers works to support birds and preserve local wildlife and their habitats on the North Fork. They’ve carved out a beautiful space in our community that I think everyone should experience (and take photos of), so lace up those sneakers and head to the woods. And if I see you on the trail, I’ll be sure to give you a smile and a wave!
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