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Winter Foraging

By David F. Babik

During the cold and dark winter months, my wife and I like to take a few hours and go explore some local antique shops. If you are like us, we have accumulated way too much stuff over the years and usually spend our time discussing why we shouldn’t buy something.

One thing that I really don’t need but can’t resist are cool old foraging baskets. I know that if I decide I really don’t need another basket I always can give one away.

One cold January afternoon we took a ride down to Bernat Mills Antique shop in Uxbridge, MA. It is a VAST multi-dealer shop and I was completely overwhelmed by the huge selection of old baskets at really affordable prices. (Many under $20). I have attached a few photos of some of the more interesting ones.

Any mushroom hunter needs a cool basket. I always try to find one that is strong but has  a look of age. You can buy a perfectly functional basket at any craft shop for cheap, but they often look new and lack any character. Searching for the perfect basket is a great winter activity.

Make sure the basket can handle some weight. Last fall, when I added a third Hen of the Woods to my basket, the handle ripped right off from the weight. Granted, they probably weighed 40 pounds combined. It was still something I hadn’t thought too much about in the past.

Hope to see you all on the trails this season with unique and unusual baskets.

Bernat Mills Antiques is located at 89 Elmdale Rd, Uxbridge, MA 01569.