I’ve never really liked spring.

You can’t ski.

The trails are too mushy for hiking.

One day it’s borderline shorts weather (so like 50 degrees in northern Minnesota), and the next day it’s 20 degrees with freezing rain.

But last weekend, I found a new appreciation for my least favorite season.

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A while ago we had a maple tree fall down in our yard and like you do when that happens, my husband cut it, split it and loaded it up in the trailer to be brought to the hunting shack to heat the wood stove.

After unloading the logs in the makeshift woodshed built from scrap material left over from when we built the shack, my husband and I put on our mud boots and went for a walk around the trails on the property (which is only an hour away from home).

A wood frog chorus guided us through the flooded trails full of frog eggs and tadpoles.

Deer tracks were imprinted in the thick mud.

Grouse drummed their wings in the distance.

A porcupine scurried up a tree.

As we neared the river we heard a familiar sound we hadn’t heard since fall. Mallards.

Down the river, a father and son were paddling their canoe and installing wood duck houses.

A juvenile bald eagle, perched on an oak branch, surveyed the scene.

A pair of swans flew overhead while a garter snake slithered away, avoiding my boot.

All of this, in just a 30-minute walk around the woods.

Maybe it’s because I’ve been cooped up inside for the past 3-4 weeks, but after a weekend spent in the woods, spring doesn’t seem as bad as I once thought it was.