Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Morels in May?

OK, so it isn't quite May yet, but it's only a few hours away. It has been a long time since I've hunted morels in May. In past years, the Missouri heat would pick up at the end of April sending soil temps too high for more flushes. The hot weather would also contribute to the mold and rot that start attacking morels late in the season. But this year seems different, more like the six week long seasons when I was a in high school and an undergrad.

Speaking of school, I have been finishing up a master's thesis, so I have not been able to get out and hunt since last Saturday. But I turned in my final draft today and just needed some stress relief, so I left work an hour early to hit the woods. I had my bike loaded up so I could save some time and bike out a ways from where other hunters on foot had already been searching.

I got to a likely spot and went to hide my bike behind some bushes when I looked down and saw a nice pair. It didn't take long before I was getting out a second sack. I hunt with small bags so I don't squash the mushrooms by placing too many on top. Don't get me started on the myths of mesh bags, but in my opinion they have a tendency to shred the mushrooms. Plastic is alright for rainy days, but DO NOT store morels in plastic bags as the bags trap a gas that makes the mushrooms break down and rot. So I prefer paper. I find the small paper freeze bags that grocery stores use for ice cream are perfect. Not too big and extra thick paper to resist tears from stray branches and thorns. Here are a few photos from the ones today.

Here is a seven inch yellow. It is showing a few signs of age but was still fresh and meaty.
Do you see the one lurking in the background?

Here is the lurker. He was attempting to hide under a few leaves, but it is hard to hide when you're larger than a coke can.

How many?

The morel triangle. There is a little elm sapling in the middle, coincidence?

I left a few that were dried up and rotting, but many that I found were still very fresh despite the recent dry spell. The soil was very moist still so that must be helping them stay fresh.

The itch weed is getting tall, as seen behind this perfect specimen. I hate that stuff.

The bottoms are about over but the hills are still hiding a few and with more cool wet weather on the way, it may be worth hunting for the next week maybe even two.

I'll be camping near Jeff city this weekend and I think things may be over there so I am not expecting to do any hunting. It looks like I won't be able to get back out again until next Monday. I do hope the weather holds off the heat. There is a lot of woods that still need to be walked. Be sure to get out there and get them before they are gone.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Will morels continue to pop up in the same spot throughout the "season?"