Of all the many little waterways that flow into our local lake, this section of a little river is my favorite so far. It really isn't spectacular, in fact, one of its sources is a drainage pipe that carries runoff from a nearby highway. Fortunately, if you simply change your perspective, and look beyond the human impact, it's easy find the incredible natural beauty in the world around us.
Above is a photo of the little river that I took while on a walk in the woods this past January. There is a quaint wooden foot bridge that crosses over the river, and the surrounding marshlands. That is where I stood to take this shot. I was mesmerized by the glassiness of the water, and how it reflected the deadness of everything around it. The trees are all bare, with their leaves fallen brown and crisp on the ground. All is seemingly lifeless, especially so, as the sunlight fades. I don't necessarily enjoy the winter season, save for the brief snowfalls that we get here in Central North Carolina. After spending a large portion of my life living in Florida, I had forgotten how beautiful the snow can be... occasionally.
I couldn't have known that just a few days later, we were to have a snowfall. A decent one too. The temperatures dropped, and everything iced over. Including my river. Everything was clean and untouched. As we walked along the footbridge, we searched for animal footprints in the snow covered marsh, and found some. Mostly birds, and possibly raccoon. But a little further up the path, I followed a long trail of rabbit tracks, up the hills and along the banks of another creek.
Even though I don't much enjoy the cold, I make it a point to find the things that I can be grateful for: frozen rivers, and bunny tracks, and for winter giving me a reason to light the fireplace!