Walking through Preservation Parks is a pretty relaxing activity, with none of the dangers that hikers can run across in mountain (black bear), Western (grizzly bear) or desert (scorpion) locales.
Most of our walks are of the white-tailed deer, squirrel, dragonfly and butterfly variety -- with, for excitement, a few hawks scoping out their prey. Like I said, quite tame. Pretty much the scariest thing that ever happens to me is walking into a spider web.
So we're interested when we get reports of scary creatures in the parks. Two recent ones spurred us to action: the report of a sea creature in a pond, and a coyote that was following park visitors.
A couple of months ago, I received a phone call from a man who had been taking pictures at the pond at Hogback Ridge Preserve. He said he had discovered our own Loch Ness monster -- right here in Delaware County! He described the fierce-looking spines on a back of something emerging from the water, and the strange bulbous eyes peering out at water level. The spiny back would submerge, then re-emerge, as the creature made its way across the pond.