Winter Walk

Well, sort of winter. Forty degrees. The ground under foot was mushy under the melting snow. The creek that was probably frozen a couple of days ago was clear of ice today.


American Beech


Eastern Hemlock


Oak (and other leaves if you look closely)


Black Cherry


Yellow Birch


Hawthorn


White Pine

Nice walk with wonderful company.

What is this Stuff?

I wrote on New Year’s Day about a hike to a spot in southwestern New York where there used to be an orphanage. Now, only the foundations of the buildings remain. There is a plant growing all around the site that I haven’t been able to identify. We took a few cuttings and I put them in water to force them. Here’s what came out:


Three compound leaves all came out from the end of one of the cuttings.

Here’s the leaf:

Be sure to click back to the New Year’s Day hike to see the thick twisting vines that grow up and completely engulf the trees. Every new shoot coming up through the snow was this plant.

The name that keeps popping into my head is wisteria. But is there a variety of wisteria that can withstand our western New York winters?

January 8, 2017

Why do we wake up some days in lethargy with little interest in or desire for the day’s unfolding? That was me this morning. And then the light began to reveal a perfect winter day fresh with powder. I knew I didn’t have the energy for a full day of hiking. I also knew I would regret it if I didn’t get out there.

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Just under 1.5 miles with elevation change of around 100 feet, it was a good length and it refreshed my soul. We were only “lost” for a short distance. We’ve walked this trail dozens of times and know it well. Conversation and playing with the dog got us slightly offtrack.

glock

Snowshoes were a must. In some spots the powder was quite deep. The return trip was by road without snowshoes.

1.4 miles
+ another 1 mile loop with Lolli after supper.
#365MileChallenge

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New Year’s Day 2017

Terry says my jaw dropped when he turned onto the unplowed Holt Run Road. “The road less traveled is seldom plowed,” he said. New snow tires and 4-wheel drive got us to the trail head – and back out again after the hike.

Last time we came out this way, we found the foundation of a building which we later learned had been a school / orphanage. We wanted to find it again, this time with a camera. I had forgotten to load the waypoints into the GPS, but we remembered the general area and found it.

The most perplexing thing to me is a vine that grows all over the area. Just about all the new growth coming up on the forest floor is this plant, and just about every tree near these old foundations is covered with the stuff.

I will HAVE to go back in spring to see what it looks like when it’s in bloom… if it blooms.

3.7 miles

Fine Day for a Walk

The only bad thing about a day like today is knowing how to dress. Highs predicted to be in the upper thirties with the “real feel” the same. When in doubt – go with layers.  I picked well.  The extra layers I carried in my pack were never needed.  Go me.

We had to pick a section of the park north of France Brook Road to avoid the hunters.  The Park used to always be “no hunting” on Sundays.  This year, though, hunting IS allowed on the Quaker side, south of France Brook.

We parked at a new (or at least new to me) marker commemorating the location of the first capture and release program of turkeys in the park.

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According to the plaque, this is the site of the first trap and transfer program.  The sign reads, “Allegany State Park – Founding site for the N.Y.S. Conservation Dept. Wild Turkey Transfer Program. Birds trapped at this site helped reintroduce the Eastern Wild Turkey to the northeastern U.S. & southeastern Canada. 1959.”

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We walked France Brook to the Horse/”Jeep” trail, then headed uphill.  After getting tired of walking roads, we headed toward the sound of a gurgling creek and followed that all the way down to Horse Trail 11 up above Camps 10 and 12, then followed it to Camp 12, and roads back to the truck.

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There was no snow down at France Brook.  But as we climbed, the hills were covered.  Saw lots of colorful fungi, as well as some deer and coyote tracks.  But my favorite was the bear:

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The walk was about 5 and 1/2 miles.  It was a good day.

And my new thermos worked!  Hot soup for lunch.

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(No, the color isn’t off.  It’s vegetarian borscht!)

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elevation-profile

P.S.  I love the new GPS I bought myself for my birthday last month.  It’s fun to turn it on and track my hikes.

I love Camp Timbercrest

This week, my daughter and I hiked at camp twice.  I was in search of the Pink Lady’s Slippers that bloom there.  On Tuesday, they were up, but still pale and ghostly.  On Saturday, the were glorious.  Along the way we took lots of other pictures, too.

Painted Trillium:

Rose Twisted Stalk:

Star Flower:

Wild Geranium:

Golden Ragwort:

May Apple:

A bench overlooking Jackman Bay:

Jackman Bay from the Peninsula:

Re-growth around beaver-chewed trees:

Red Eft:

Animal Tracks in the mud:

This Shinrin-yoku (forest bathing) was good for my soul! So grateful to be a Girl Scout and have access to such a gorgeous place for hiking.

A Spring (?) Walk

April 10, 2016.  25 degrees.  Snow lingers on the crunchy frozen earth.  I dress for a February hike.  I should be looking for spring wildflowers, not animal tracks in the snow.  Ah well…

IMG_7433-Coyote tracks

In addition to coyote tracks, we saw tracks of deer, rabbits, squirrels, mice, fox, turkey, and more. We also heard grouse and saw deer. We visited the beaver pond and watched a goose try to swim away making tinkling noises as he broke through the ice.

There were wildflowers, though. And domesticated ones.

 

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Skunk Cabbage

 

IMG_7459-Narcissus

Daffodils

This in April. And in December I could have photographed violets and dandelions.

Weird Weather.