Archived Story

What a glorious time of year!

Published 10:47am Saturday, March 16, 2013

This is one of the best times to be outdoors in Alabama.

It’s crisp-cold at night, not far from freezing, and by mid afternoon, its T-shirt weather.

Spring is just beginning to emerge from winter out there.

Trillium — one of the first green (well, blue-green) plants to come up each year — is sprinkled throughout the brown pinestraw and winterized leaves of our forests.

I’ve already seen burgundy trillium blooms shooting toward the sky from the junction of its three leaves.

This week, ornamental pears erupted in a shock of white blooms — A beautiful sight, but not my favorite scent of spring.

One of the best aspects of March is the lack of biting insects.

In a few weeks, mosquitos will begin buzzing our ears and latching on to any exposed skin for a high-iron meal.

The redbugs and deerflies won’t be far behind.

But for now, you can walk in our woods unmolested.

You can also run in our woods, like I did Friday morning.

It was cold enough to make me want to pull my hands inside my long sleeve T-shirt, but that passed after the first mile was behind me.

After that it was near perfect weather to run on a trail.

I didn’t have to  wave through a single early-morning spider web.

The sky was bright blue. The breeze was cool enough to keep the sweat out of my eyes.

I often run with music, but Friday was so beautiful I ran unplugged and soaked up all the nature I could.

Birds flushed up ahead if me all for more than four miles.

I even caught a glimpse of a huge piliated woodpecker, its bright red head shining and the white wing patches flashing as it flew at eye-level through the pines beside me.

Turkey season opened up Friday, and I would have been just as happy to be in the forest with a 12 gauge as with running shoes.

But given my history hunting turkeys, I was probably smart to opt for running, a sport where you are expected to come home empty-handed.

The weatherman says this weekend will bring more perfect weather, and it wont be as chilly in the mornings.

If you have the time, I’d highly recommend you get out there and enjoy one of the best times to be outdoors all year.

Boone is publisher of The Outlook.