As I watched the deer scatter off into the forest, I decided that I would try to find them again. They were going in the same general direction I was going, so I thought I might be able to sneak up on them in a little while. The immediate trail unfortunately lead away from them.
Wait! Stop the story! I know I said yesterday that I'd be stalking those deer like a hunter. Don't worry, I am doing that. To stalk the deer, I had to take it slow. I couldn't go running into the forest after them. I had to let them think they got away. If I wasn't careful, I would never get the pictures I wanted.
If any of you are curious, I do sometimes find it irresistible to give small clues to the future of my stories in the comments section. It all depends on how a certain comment is put by someone. Sometimes the comments greatly enhance these stories. I have already left a few clues that there is a big payoff to this one. Back to the story.
As I followed the trail away from the deer, I decided to take a quick look at Carpenter Lake. This was another reason I came here. I wanted to see how much everything has thawed, especially the lake water. It was hard to see through the trees up here, but I saw what I was looking for.
The ice on the lake was still there, but it was now very thin, and there were huge patches that were thawed completely. I could actually see liquid water out on this lake for the very first time. To me, this was a beautiful sight.
As I walked along, I continued to examine the lake. I was quickly approaching the place where I could look down at my new play area walkway that ended with the fishing platform. I wanted to see what the ice looked like around the platform.
As I looked down from a now familiar spot, I saw that there was more liquid water around the platform than ever before. The ice around it was cracking and it was up a little higher than the top of the water. The thin ice looked like a shell on top of the lake now.
I looked a little closer, and saw that the recently thawed water was tinged with an ugly yellow color. I knew this would change for the better when the water thawed all the way, but for now the scene down there didn't seem quite as attractive as it had been before.
As I turned away from the bridge to start down the trail again, I noticed that there was something odd at the end of the trail. You see, this section of the trail that I was on pointed straight in the direction that the deer had run off to. It seems the deer hadn't run very far at all.
This part of the trail was long, and it was hard to see that far, but I was looking straight into the eyes of one of the deer again. It already saw me, and it was looking right back at me. I wasn't very close to it yet, so it didn't feel the need to run again right now.
As I tried to focus my eyes to see the deer better, I remembered that I needed to get some more pictures. I got one of exactly what I was seeing. I then began to see that the whole herd was right there at the end of the trail. They were all in slightly different places watching me, just like the first one I saw.
I realized that I was going to have to get closer to get any good pictures, so I took my first slow steps towards this herd of deer. I hoped they would not run so quickly away this time. This trail went straight to where these deer were standing, and I had nowhere else to go. What would happen next?