Friday, September 19, 2014

Jackpot !!

I have had the worst mushroom season that I have ever experienced. Yes, 2014 has been epic in futility. I haven't had trouble actually finding any mushrooms. My problem has been that everything I have found should have been found during the previous week. I haven't found much of anything that was fit to eat. I had a grand total of 3 chanterelles. Things have gotten so bad between me and the Chicken of the Woods that I just look at them from the truck with binoculars. I usually haven't had to take a better look to see that they weren't any-good.

Today (9/19/14) started out the same. I decided to check out a Barbour County road where I saw some too old chickens last year. I hadn't gone very far up the road and there was an oak log that was totally covered with Chicken of the Woods; way too old ones. I barely had to slow down to make that determination. Yep, same old same old should have been there last week. I continued onward and after a short distance there was an old, very nasty yellow and orange looking Lion's Mane growing on a beech tree.

I guess mushroom hunting is about like turkey hunting; you sure aren't going to get anything if you are not out there. I was thinking that at least I'm headed towards a spot where the dogs like to walk. Then I saw it; a small clump of fresh chickens on a stump. Not many, but enough for a meal. It was the little clump on the right side of the photo. Well, at least it wasn't another couple of gallons wasted on a foraging trip. I gathered them and headed on.

I was nearing the end of productive mushroom woods and happened to look up on the hill and there they were; a nice bunch growing in the top of a Sandy snapped tree. I could barely reach them but i managed to get them all and only fall over the hill, once. I now have enough to eat this weekend and enough to freeze for Thanksgiving. This is the latest in the season that I have ever found any good Chicken of the Woods. I figured we are about into the period of nothing except for Oysters and Shaggy Manes. Things look up when you don't give up.

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