While Haidee and I had just intended to wander along the well-trodden paths, Rick was having nothing of it, and before long we were tramping through untracked snow on our snowshoes.
We continued on a round-about route to the northeast, trying to stay off the paths as much as possible.
By the time we had made it to the Nature Center, it wasn’t quite time for a break, so we pushed on into the forest proper. We were on hardpacked trails for a while that did not require the use of snowshoes. Then we decided to break our own trail into the woods to see if we could spot any owls. This was the area, so said the guidebook, so we had our eyes peeled.
Alas, no owls were spotted. We did see a black woodpecker, as well as a couple of great spotted woodpeckers. With no luck in this area, we made our way back to the Nature Center to have some lunch and warm up.
With renewed energy, we took another quick look at an area where Rick had spotted owls previously, but to no avail. Back to the trailhead it was, via a vague route through the woods.
We were following our noses back to the Memorial Tower (or the “Tower of Mordor” as I like to call it). So we were happy to see it emerge in front of us as we finally exited the woods.
Thus ended out great owl hunt. No owls seen, but a great workout in the winter wonderland that is Nopporo Forest Park.