Hunting for Morel Mushrooms: I Finally Found One!
For the last few years, the Morel Mushroom has taunted me. My brother got me started and I’m usually a tag along for when he goes and hunts for them. But I love it! For me, it is the challenge of the hunt. The timing, temperature, location, and a keen eye to spot these sponge top fungi poking up out of the leaves all come into play. Until last weekend I hadn’t any luck.
But as we were walking to a certain location (realize all Mushroom Hunters keep successful locations TOP SECRET!), I spotted a four leaf clover crossing the fence. I knew then, this was going to be the Day! We had the Luck of the Hunt. I would find my very first Morel Mushroom, wild in the forest.
Well, the luck initially went to my brother. Darn him. He found the first patch. And although I carefully strolled over and spotted the few there without him specifically pointing them out, he still saw them first. These didn’t count towards my find. I was determined to find some on my own walking through the area of our search.
We walked a little further, and there it was! Of course, I left out a bit of a yell. Wouldn’t you after searching so long for one?! I was so excited! A Morel! A Black Morel! And there were more nearby! One I must have stepped over without seeing because it was broken off, but another was standing tall! WHAT! 3 of them! No way. It was one for each of the previous years I found none.
Oh, I know some hunters who come back with wheelbarrow loads, year after year, but I was happy for those 3! Actually, we found a few more this day, and we need to go back later this week. But how awesome to find the ones we did! We have our secret patch now!
The Morel is one of America’s favorite mushrooms for beginner hunters to search for. The main reason for this, at least for myself, is they are easily identifiable. Some Mushrooms are deadly if eaten, and so if ever in doubt on kind of mushroom, leave it. NEVER assume it is edible. ALWAYS know exactly what it is, or DON’T pick and NEVER EVER eat it.
Although I don’t eat them (I’ve tasted them though), the Morel is thought to be one of the tastiest mushrooms. They do sell for quite a bit at the store, and so to find them wild is considered a ‘treasure’.
Nonetheless, it’s all hunt for me. My brother can have and cook up the bounties. He hunts for various mushrooms all year round and I like to go with him when I get chance to then too. I’ll have more stories to share as hunts go on.
The Morel only offers a short window of time to hunt for them each year. Maybe a few weeks in the Spring.
They are thought to grow best when the soils are just warming and temperatures during the day reach between 50-70degrees, and don’t dip below 40 degrees at night. After recent rains, but not too much, are a great time (supposedly) too.
I loved the answer my brother gave me when asking ‘where do Morels grow?’ He learned from others to say, ‘Morels grow where Morels grow!’
There are so many different theories.
Because of our finds, we like old deserted apple orchards and at the base of poplar trees near moist areas. This works for him, and now me too! 🙂
Once you find a spot, remember where it is, and know they just might be there next year!! Or NOT…..lol…
A Morel Mushroom hunt is a fun game for me. The find a prized win. I think it is great getting out, enjoying a hike through the woods, looking for mushrooms. Reminds me of the first chapter in The Whistle Pig treasure hunt….lol…but that’s another treasure hunt story.
Best of luck with all that you seek!
Here are some other things we found, and then see if you can spot the Morel Mushroom: