Temperatures have finally warmed up, and though we had a cold snap last week that may have killed some emerging flowers, we visited a site known to have Pink Lady Slippers, one of the many wild orchids that grow in the Carolinas. We didn't spot any on our way up the trail, but on the way back, we finally found one in bloom.
My husband's size 12 hiking shoe shown on the right gives you an indication of how impressive these beauties are. Unfortunately, poachers have been known to dig them up, not knowing their existence relies on the pine trees that shade them.
When in nature, take only pictures and memories. The treasures you leave behind will be enjoyed for a lifetime.