Late October along the Pumpkinvine

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I’ve been out of town most of the last three weeks, and as a result, I missed the early fall colors of the trees along the Pumpkinvine. So today I was hoping that there would still be a few areas of color, and if not, I would just enjoy a peaceful ride.

I started at Abshire Park around 10 a.m. Earlier in the morning, the sun had been shining, and I regretted that I had started mid-morning because by the time I got to the trail, the sky was overcast making for very muted colors. Still, between SR 4 and CR 28, where trees had perhaps 20 percent of their leaves, there were moments of yellow and red, like accents in an otherwise unremarkable landscape.

The Pumpkinvine is not unique among rail-to-trails projects in having trees along both sides, but I’ve observed that other railroads, like Norfolk Southern through Goshen, are not tree lined. I’m not sure what makes them that way, but I’m just grateful that whoever was responsible for the care of the Pumpkinvine corridor when it was a railroad was either too busy or didn’t care about cutting back the trees, and as a result we can enjoy their colors every fall.

Although the section between CR 28 and CR 127 wasn’t as colorful, it had its moments also.

After exiting the woods east of CR 127, I entered the area where the trail diverts from the old railroad bed and goes around farm fields. The farmers had harvested the corn and beans, giving the fields a uniform color of brown and green, like a checker board.

As was the case in past years, the section west of CR 33 had the most color. The sky was still overcast when I went on to CR 35, but when I returned there was enough sun to bring out the yellow color.

 What I like about these photos are the way the black of the trees contrasts with the yellow of the leaves. 

I also saw the Elkhart Count Parks staff in a truck as they were blowing leaves off the trail. The truck was pulling a leaf blower and driving very slowly.