Mushroom Hike

with Cy Resident

These photos document a hike that I led on the Barton Creek Greenbelt for the Wildland Conservation folks in January 2019. Scroll down to view the photos from our adventure. If you are interested in learning more about Austin's Wildlands, including hikes and volunteer opportunities, you can find it here.

All images and text courtesy Cy Resident.

There's nothing more fun than going out and putting your mushroom eye on and going off to see what has emerged. The more you learn, the more you'll want to learn. Here our enthusiastic group is discovering an interesting mushroom specimen.


Here is a map of our route. No two hikes are ever alike because there are so many variables. But, if we pay attention, we start to notice a pattern and we become connected to our surroundings and nature.


More than anything, mushrooming is enlightening because we never have the same experience twice. Did you know that mushrooms were considered plants until they were put into their own kingdom in 1969?

Mushrooms are the fruit of the mycorrhizal network fungus, and connect trees through tiny threads called mycelium.

brittle Cinder fungus (Kretzschmaria deusta)

The tree was too high up the cliff to get close enough to see what these mushrooms were.

Wood ear mushrooms (Auricularia auricula-judae) used in hot and sour soup.

Xylaria polymorpha, commonly known as dead man's fingers.

Not sure what this is. It could be a slime mold. I like them because unlike mushrooms, they can move. There's nothing more fun than going out and putting your mushroom eye on and go off to see what has emerged.

The lovely lavender-colored gills of the wood blewit (Clitocybe nuda).

This may be a crust mushroom with teeth (vs. gills.)

Some kind of crust wood-decomposing mushrooms which grows flat against the log.

The sporophyte stage of flowering moss; this is when the spores are released much like flowers release seeds.

This cute bolete could be a ruby bolete (Hortiboletus rubellas) or one of several boletes. These, as are many mushrooms, are very difficult to identiy without much more information.

Look at the beautiful orange on the pore surface of this bolete which is likely a Suillellus.

Here's a good mushroom to try and ID. Notice its cap has bump on it and it has gills.

This is a bolete. The next photo shows its pore structure which is an easy way to identify them.

The bolete's cousin is the highly edible porcini, which sadly does not grow here. The porcini is highly prized in the food community. This one, not so much.

Some happy but destructive leaf eating beetle.