Hugh Erle Smith

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Favorite Forays

The King of All Queen Boletes, January 7. 2006

Went hunting in the Sierras today.

We were hoping to find some Chanterelles, white or gold.

And we did. We found some white Chanterelles, and in great shape.

Then we went to one of my favorite hunting spots to see what else was around and ran into Matsutakes. Lots of Matsutakes! They were from buttons all the way to 13 inches across.

Oo that smell. Can'tcha smell that smell?

By my figuring, we should have been about 2 to 3 weeks too early for them. Hopefully, this is the first wave. We'll need another rain.

We left lots of tiny buttons behind.

There should be just as many when I go back in 3 weeks.

So then we tried a new place (always looking for a new place).

We had found many Queen Boletes by this time and were starting to get tired of them, but just as we started to pull out of there, out jumps this giant Boletus aereus. She was definitely THEE queen. Maybe the King of all queen Boletes.

There she stood before us. 11 and 7/8ths inches across and 4.98 pounds. And in top shape. A real keeper! What a prize! Hard to believe she was so solid and so large.

It'll take several meals to finish this one.