"A SHORT TREATISE ON FINDING MUSHROOMS" Personal Page by mtncorg
The northwestern coast region of North America - from southeastern Alaska to northern California - can be regarded as a fungal center of the World. Of course, browsing through the pages of VT you will find the odd mushroom or two in other faraway regions, but more wild mushrooms are found in this region than any other. There are many different mushrooms to be found while wandering about in the forests of Oregon, though the three best known ones form the mainstay of the 'industry' - chanterelle (both a native form and another known as a yellowfoot, which is the same as the European chanterelle), the king porcini (also known as the king bolette) - the are many other porcinis to be found as well - and the matsutake (Japanese pine mushroom). These mushrooms are found mostly in the early to mid Fall months and can be found in great abundance depending upon the seasonal climatic picture. Hiking in the woods during this time of year, you can find many people out searching through the duff of the forest floor in search of the forest bounty - local retail prices for the mushrooms vary from $10 per pound ($25 per kg) and up.
While it is certainly possible to center your entire outing on finding mushrooms, I find it much more rewarding to simply make it another adjunct of the hike - something else to keep your eyes open too as you hike another trail towards another destination.
What is also improtant is enjoying yourself on the hike and taking time out for a leisurely lunch. Sit back and enjoy the view, the comradeship, the food, the drink. Go over your mushrooming strategy and make plans for the dinners that lay ahead.
Some sausages, cheese, bread, local fruit and wine. Put that mushroom knife to other uses than cleaning up the stalks of mushrooms found (OPINEL).
Always have your eyes open and be aware of the little flash out of the corner of your eye as you make your way along the trail. Carry a mushroom book along to help identify the different types. During any outing it is easy to come upon dozens of species, most of which, while certainly not fatal, will not be edible without vast quantities of vodka! Be alert to the possibilities of new tasty fungi awaiting.
And as you gain knowledge, feel free to pass it on to those coming behind. They might want extra mushrooms on their pizza, too!
Always be alert to the many ways in which to prepare the bounties you have uncovered. Mushroom recipes abound in books, the internet, maybe even your local newspaper.
Remember, when you get home to invite your friends, for a forest feast should always be shared!
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