As Good As It Gets – 2015 Morels

stuufed afterNot so much the number of morels, but the “Company and Cooking” made this season special.


Here’s a link to a video made by Amy, the Knoxville News-Sentinel photographer who accompyoutubeanied Steve, Rich and I on a hunt last Thursday. The print version, by
Morgan Simmons, is subscriber only on the website.


With all the rain we had, and a cold winter, I expected it to be a bumper crop; however, it turned out to be mediocre for black morels based on the experience of myself and a number of other people. Yellow morels started out slow and then picked up. Overall, it seemed to be a good year in places. You just had to be there. As Ellen, the psychotherapist says, “Truth telling has to be with right timing and in the right place.” And that’s no lie!

spring1The signs of spring were confusing at best. We would be in places where the tree and ground cover suggested the timing was right, but no morels. Some traditional spots yielded good results, but others other drew a blank. Go figure. Once again, the season was summed up by my friend Rich, “Morel hunting teaches me more about patience, hope and humility than church does.”

RAIN YELLOWSAfter our walk in the rain, I got a few yellows over the weekend, and then joined Steve and Rich on Tues at another place. Total was 230, mostly yellows. For whatever reason, allergies, fatigue or you name, it my portion was only 40. Of course, I am always the low man when hunting with this pair of morel hounds. I have to remember to be a closer shadow :-) Again, lessons in humility.

spring2I’ve said before, never leave a ‘shroom behind. Well, this year I learned that again. My friend Joe has a spot where they come up gray and then turn to yellow. When the first ones emerged, we said, “Let’s measure their growth.” We left my business card next to one for scale and took a day 2 picture and a day 3 picture. On day 4, the morels had been cut (by someone who is known to us). I haven’t and won’t go back there. For me, morel huntign is more than bagging as much as you can. It’s about sharing the excitement of hunting, a ritual of renewal in the Spring, and renewing friendships. I leave the rest to the “baggers”.

I’m about done for the year, and ready for getting back on my bike. I’ve got  2 1/2 months to get in shape for the bicycle road race event in the Tennessee Senior Olympics. I did lose about 5 lbs this morel season – lots of ridges climbed. After that, June 19, it will be back in the woods or chanterelles !!


7 thoughts on “As Good As It Gets – 2015 Morels

  1. You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for writing them. I wait for them in my email and am very grateful for them, I’m sure other people are as well. Just thought you should know.

  2. Happy Saturday :-) A while back you mentioned putting together some kind of overview of good morel environments. If you can find the time before next season that would be greatly appreciated as we only know where to look down here in the flatlands. We’ve never found any on a ridge, only in creek bottoms and swampy places under ash, poplars, and elms. We enjoy your posts and keep up the great work. The Newmans

  3. Great Blog. I look forward to every one or your entries. Well written and such good information! Here in SC the trees are fully leafed out which brings an end to Morel season. So sorry. Boykin

  4. NO, but I know who it was because he called the other person who knew about the site (had shown me)and told the other person that he had cut the 8 or so little grays. Don’t think I’ll be foraying with the bagger unless I take him to your patches. OOPs, you’ve never shared them with me :-) Missed seeing you this weekend, but heard you enjoyed the Irvine moral fest. Let’s get together.

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