A pleasant loop hike to the crest of Cacapon Mountain, through a forest filled with blueberry, and past the park lake. If you are hiking in the Cacapon area in summer and notice few leaves on the trees or the ground covered with green leaf pieces, look on the branches for a medium-sized, lightly fuzzy caterpillar with red spots.
The oaks in the area have been battling gypsy moths, a species brought to the United States in the late 1860s to produce silk. The moth escaped, and by the 1890s defoliation was occurring. Although gypsy moth larvae will feed on many tree species, oaks are their favorite. In areas with severe infestation, trees may be totally defoliated. Special attractions: Mountain and lakeside views, mountain laurel blooming in June.
© Steven Carroll and Mark Miller/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.