Mushroom Obsession RSS

Okay, it's September. The time of year when, at least here in the Great Northwet, the forest floors are usually crawling with Chanterelles. But, we're in the midst of a drought. We had the longest rain-free period on record this summer, broken only late last week by a fine spitty smattering of rain. So little, you could barely call it rain. I'd been out on a foray a few weeks earlier, and found some Chanterelles struggling to survive in the dry forest. So, my hopes were lit at even at that pathetic little pinch of precipitation, thinking perhaps it might...

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Lobster Mushroom, lobsters -

When I suggest to people that we are heading out to hunt Lobsters, I get a lot of raised eyebrows. "I thought you were into mushrooms?" they say. "Are you switching over to seafood now?" No, I assure them. While I do like seafood — a lot, and crabbing is one of my favorite things — of course I'm speaking of Lobster mushrooms, which is the vegetarian equivalent of the tasty crustacean. And there's lots of good news here ... the first is, you don't need to get wet (well, at least not very wet) to hunt them. The second...

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blonde morels, Clackamas River, geocaching, Gyromitra esculenta, morels, Oregon, Oyster mushrooms, Snowbank Morels, yellow morels -

But, hopefully not the last! I know ... mushroom-obsessed people can be a little creepy sometimes. I felt a bit like Gollum, two weekends ago, when my son Nathan and I went on our first morel-hunting foray down into Oregon, and he snapped this photo of me sneaking up on my first morel find of the season, a nice yellow (or blonde) morel. Some friends and I, pictured at left, had taken a previous foray, in mid-April, into a canyon which had a 2015 burn where we had previously found fire morels, near the town of Leavenworth. Because of the...

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Here at Shortsinwoods, we harvested a huge crop of Shaggy Parasols (Chlorophylum rhacodes) this Fall. These mushrooms dehydrate very easily, and after doing this we found ourselves with about a half dozen gallon-size bags full! These beautiful mushrooms began growing (wild) in our gravel driveway a few years ago, then took up residence in a decaying pile of Bigleaf Maple leaves which I had been using as a repository for the huge Bigleaf Maple tree in our back yard when it dumped its leaves each fall. The caps have a lovely feathery appearance and can be 7" or more in...

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The Morel may be my favorite mushroom (taste-wise), but the Spring season isn't my favorite season. There are a few other mushrooms out there in the Spring, but not near as many as in the Fall. So Morels are definitely the focus. And here in Washington State, Morel hunting is a tough go. This is primarily because they grow mainly in burned-out Douglas Fir forests, and there is fierce competition for them with professional hunters, who take the lion's share. These hardy folk are out there each Spring, and they know where their favorite spots are. Makes it hard to...

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