To Find a Sit Spot

An unlikely spot along the Mill Trail has found me. A level, treeless floodplain down about 100 feet from the Mill Trail at the edge of the Stowe Land Trust property line caught my eye. I scrambled down the steep, mossy slope to sit on the stilted root of a yellow birch that was clinging to the hillside, mastering gravity’s pull. I could hear the steady thrum of the Notch Brook while also tuning in to the chickadees by the trail still singing my coordinates to anyone listening.It turns out, there was someone listening.

After scrambling back up the slope, noting the hemlock trees and wintergreen populating the area, I stopped. The odor was distinct but elusive, like its owner.  A pungent skunkiness seemed to mark the exact spot on the trail I had left to descend to my sit spot. After spotting no tracks in the stiff earth, I walked back down the path towards the cabin. A blotch on a rock  instantly affirmed what my nose was trying to tell me. Twisted with short hairs and as dark as loam, the red fox scat was practically laughing at me. I will be looking (and smelling) out for it next time.