I was able to enjoy the Oak-Hickory Trail today at Fairy Stone State Park as part of a field session at the 2012 Virginia Master Naturalist Statewide Conference and Training. The conference was hosted by the Southwestern Piedmont Chapter, whose home base is Martinsville and Henry County.
Rebecca Rader (green shirt), led the group and is the Executive Secretary of the North American Mycological Association and founder of the New River Valley Mushroom Club.
September is the primo month to spot these little beauties in the wild, grab your camera and hike this trail, you will be glad you did! I had so much fun with my eyes peeled toward the ground, on the trail and in the leaf litter the mushrooms were abundant!
The Oak-Hickory Trail is a short trail just 1.1 miles and you can park at the Allied Picnic Shelters, or walk over from the main Fairy Stone beach parking area. It is a moderate hike, and you may encounter all sorts of wildlife.
Learn more about mushrooms from The North American Mycological Association website here. Bring a field guide with you to help identify them, I would caution about picking them in case some may be poisonous, taking photos is plenty of fun!
The cabins at Fairy Stone State Park are open year-round. Originally built by the CCC, they even have wood burning fireplaces and screened-in porches, so are wonderful in any season!
Learn more about Fairy Stone State Park here.
Drive Time: Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C., six hours (from Washington, DC); Richmond, four hours; Tidewater/ Norfolk/Virginia Beach, five hours; Roanoke, one hour. Fairy Stone State Park, 967 Fairystone Lake Drive, Stuart, VA 24171-9588; Phone: (276) 930-2424.