Wed April 28
Hike report and 4 photos by Nancy L .
Doll Hill, Connecticut Hill Wildlife Management Area
10 hikers met at the top of Rowell Hill Road on a nice spring morning. Rowell hill road actually goes up Doll Hill. The drivable part ends neat the top of the ridge of Doll Hill. We followed a trail that heads mostly South and relatively level along the side of the hill. The going was easy. The forest in this area was nicely lit without much undergrowth or leaves on the trees which provided a nice view to the west of the nearest hills west of Doll Hill including Rowell Hill and Porcupine Hill (listed north to south). At the south end of this hillside traverse there is a small ruin. Then the trail heads downhill. When the trail leveled off we came to a large ruin surrounded by the ubiquitous purple flowered vinca and even a patch of daffodils. The remains of. a carriage can be seen spread around. In fact we followed an evident carriage road down to Carter creek from there. It’s lined by a row of large trees probably sugar maples. The road remains crossed the creek but we didn’t go that way. We followed a trail near the creek on its east side as we headed back north along the base of Doll Hil. We passed by the remains of a beaver dam. There is another creek crossing at the north end of this section. At this point we crossed the creek and took a trail up to Carter Creek road. Some of us took this road north back to Rowell Hill road and then took a right up that road to the cars. The rest of us went back across the creek to a trail that went up through hummocky hemlocks to doll hill ridge again and our cars.
Three more photos. by Tiger
Sat May 1
Hike report by Leigh Ann. Photos by Tiger/shesse & Cian
Bald Hill Road to the Abbott Loop and The Pinnacles look-out, Danby SF
This morning, 11 hikers met up at the junction of Bald Hill and Station Roads. We hiked the section of the Abbot Loop that heads east from Bald Hill Road to the Pinnacles and back to Bald Hill Road. This is a steep and reliably enjoyable hike.
Although the weather didn’t look promising at the start, the cold and overcast sky broke open when we were almost to the Pinnacles. Within ten minutes, the sky went from overcast to clear, and the view from the Pinnacles was magnificent. The ponds in Linsday Parsons Preserve were ringed with fresh grass, and the ponds across Route 34 were more evident than usual. These included the pond containing the Rookery, where tree stumps stick out of a pond and provide nesting sites for osprey and other birds.
Under the bright blue sky, every bud was a chartreuse-colored leaf jewel. The top of the hill was dry with only a few tiny patches of snow from last night’s storm. This was a nice change from the water slog that was the first part of the hike, where there were 2-3 inches of standing water across many parts of the trail.
When the Abbot Loop recrosses Bald Hill Road, you get to decide whether you want to retrace your steps over the Pinnacles or take a 20-minute road hike back to the cars. Most people chose to take the road back, to avoid the water slog. The funny thing is that when the sun was out and the day was warmer, the watery parts were more attractive, so it didn’t seem like so much of a slog.
Thanks to Steve and Susan for leading this hike!
You can see Cian’s complete photo album here
Sun May 2
Hike report by Jim. Photos by Cian
Shindagin Hollow SF — FLT east from Shindagin Hollow Road to South Road
Fifteen hikers and three dogs met on the seasonal portion of Shindagin Hollow Rd for a hike of the FLT towards the Shindagin lean-to and beyond to South RD
It was a bright, sunny day as the individual members of the group arrived at the meeting location. Once under the canopy of new leaves it was a mixture of direct sunlight and shadows as we moved through the forest. Many other day hikers and outdoor enthusiasts were sharing the same natural spaces as our group.
The flying bugs far outnumbered the members of our group; those without bug headnets were in for a long arduous bug-swatting experience on this hike.
Crossing the footbridge we couldn’t help but observe the high water levels and fast-flowing streams from this weeks snow ( ! ) and rainfall. Climbing the hill on the outbound leg, every few feet of forward movement involved crossing over one of many small rivulets that were running across the footpath ( if you were lucky ) or entirely down the trail thereby turning it into a small streambed ( if you were really unlucky ). The sight of new flowers and forest greenery rising from the ground were welcome sights for everyone.
The group found a small family unit occupying the lean-to, so we passed by quickly so as to not disturb them. Climbing the hill beyond the shelter involved traversing trail that was almost entirely reduced to a soggy mess of roots and mud.
Most of the group reached South RD before turning around and re-tracing their footsteps to the cars.
After reconvening on Shindagin Hollow RD, some members of the group drove to Gulf Creek Rd where the bicycle trails come out onto that roadway. A short hike down the bicycle trails brought the group to the stump where for many years a gold colored shoe has resided. On our recent hike it was found that the shoe was now missing. Thanks to the generous donation by Nancy H, a new gold shoe now resides on the stump.
You can see Cian’s complete photo album here