I hiked the tail end of Deadmans Bay Path yesterday, from the town of Blackhead to Small Point and back.

It’s a beautiful part of the trail, very different from the start of it in the fact that it mostly runs through the forest. The forest floor along the trail is covered with crackerberries, a favourite plant of mine not only because it’s pretty but also because it’s so lavishly spread out along the East Coast Trail; it sometimes seems as if someone planted them there especially, for every hiker to enjoy.

From June to November, the crackerberry goes through three distinctly different stages:

  • Early in the year, in spring, the crackerberry pops up with its small white flowers, it’s really quite a sight to see them everywhere on your hike.
  • When summer comes around in August, the white flowers make way for small bunches of bright red berries, which can be eaten if you forgot to bring your lunch. Most people don’t like the taste of the crackerberry, it is pretty dull, but I find that when you remove the red skin from the fruit, the berry sort of tastes like a very mild lychee.
  • Right now of course, we have the autumnal version of the crackerberry, without the berry itself but with very colourful leaves.

Here’s a few photos of them throughout 2010:

Spring crackerberries – Blackhead Path

Summer crackerberries – Stiles Cove Path

Fall crackerberries – Deadmans Bay Path