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Old Apr 6, 2009, 11:45 pm   #1
Bachflock
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Good weekend in woods...

Although morel-less, COOOOLD deluge rain with mixed wet snow, I spent several hours traipsing around the woods south of Alpena. I think, just maybe, I found a very young beefsteak. Right color, texture, and it was near where I find (and leave) beefsteaks year after year. I am also 99.9% sure I found a huge chaga. I am going to research it out a bit more but the growth from the birch is easily 28" across left to right and 18" top to bottom. Next, I found some light orangish mushrooms growing from standing trees. At first I thought they were some sort of polypore but realized they were gilled. I wasn't in a position to collect and carry (staying at rustic cabin in the middle of no-where and didn't prepare) so I didn't harvest any samples. Looking at pictures and reading some description on Mushroomexpert.com I'm leaning toward thinking they may have been oysters. If they are - there was a BUNCH of them. I found an old woodear, may have even been overwintered. Finally, after returning home I had gone to the rifle range and found what looked like some sort of very young cup fungus. Frankly much to young for me to be positive as it was sticking up, in a tight cluster, through the soil (sandy/mossy) only about 1/4 inch but it was an interesting find.

Despite the cold, wet, WINDY weather it was fun just walking around and exploring!
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Old Apr 7, 2009, 10:34 pm   #2
Bachflock
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Re: Good weekend in woods...

I'll try to get some on tomorrow, Jon. Day off...
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Old Apr 9, 2009, 7:45 pm   #3
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Re: Good weekend in woods...

LOL!! I'll put you in contact with my wife... she has a new work computer and has our other computer in a bit of disarray. I PROMISE pics by Saturday evening. Oh, and I will add... after researching it out I am 100% convinced its chaga. Growth out from a scar on a birch. Looks just like burned wood over most of the surface. Isn't quite as hard as wood but very very close. In one of the pics I have I put a glove on it for perspective.
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Old Apr 10, 2009, 1:37 pm   #4
Bachflock
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Re: Good weekend in woods...

Ok... I (finally) held up my end of the deal. Here's the link to the chaga photos. If you don't agree let me know; however, I'm convinced. Also check out my photos in the Identification help section and tell me what you think. Thanks for the patience!!

Chaga Photos
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Old Apr 11, 2009, 12:38 am   #5
Bachflock
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Re: Good weekend in woods...

Yeah Roosevelt, I've considered that as well. Only one way to tell for sure - cut a section out. I looked at this thing pretty extensively - having read your post prior to finding this I was pretty suprized to see it. I "thumped" on it; grabbed part of the growth and wiggled it, etc. I would certainly NOT describe this as hard as wood - hard cork would be close. Not trying to get my hopes up but I'm pretty well convinced. LOL
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Old Apr 27, 2009, 4:26 pm   #6
Bachflock
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Re: Good weekend in woods...

I actually arrived back from camp last Thursday but didn't get on the ole computer. Easy to spend to much time here instead of with the family outside - LOL!

I came back turkey-less but had a great time none the less. While hunting I believe I found at least 6 more trees (on 200 acres) that may have chaga. I am VERY interested in positively identifying this. I sent an e-mail to the State (dangerous - I know - LOL) asking about the sale of wild fungi collected on private property, etc. The sum of the response is you can but you have to have an expert review the fungus for sale, etc.

I have collected a small sample of what I believe to be chaga. If there is anyone here that is an "expert" please PM me and we can communicate about this.

As far as morels - still to early over there but any day. It made it to 72 the Saturday before turkey season openner but it was pretty dry all in all. Monday it rained ALL day but never got above 38 degrees. It was cold and semi-wet through Wednesday so plenty of moisture on the ground now - I wouldn't be suprised if there was a flush going on right now. Wish it wasn't 2.5 hours away.

I did find a passle of beef steak - Gyromitra sp. of some sort. I found a few growing within inches of a patch of snow in the woods. All near pine rows. I also found a few more mock oysters and was looked to be the start of a fresh turkey fan fungi - or something similar. It was growing in the middle of the two-track to the cabin, soft and plyable and had similar pattern of color, dark brown with lighter bands. Only thing was it wasn't growing on any visible wood.

Anyway, had a good time. Cold, wet, but fun.
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