Soon the moonlight was so bright that people and objects cast long shadows. The group moved out onto the snaking, moderately steep 2.5-mile Seven Bridges Trail. The trail’s wooden bridges passed over rushing water that the eye could discern only as a roiling outline. Yet the moonlight illuminated the way enough so that the hikers could see large rocks.
Other senses were heightened in the darkness. The aroma of pine became more intense; the sound of a night hawk became a shriek. “I like to feel with my feet,” said one hiker, Wynne Whyman, as she picked her way around the rocks. “It makes me feel more in touch with the earth.”
Something to keep in mind: the night brings out nocturnal creatures — bats, bears and big cats come to mind. All of which can see much better in the dark than people. It’s true there’s a certain magic about being out under the moonlight far from the city lights, though I can’t help imagining the creatures of the night wondering “jeeze, we give ’em the whole day, and now they want the night, too?”