Report to Hikers June 24-June 30

Wednesday, June 26th

Connecticut Hill Saddle & Pond Loop

Hike report by Dave Bock

17 hikers and a dog met at the Tower & Ridge trailhead on a nice day for hiking. The morning rains forecast earlier in the week got rescheduled for afternoon, so we were able to enjoy moderate temperatures, mixed sunshine and clouds, and an occasional cooling breeze. The 4 miles of trails were almost completely in the woods. Forests varied from mixed hardwoods to towering hemlocks, from younger trees to old growth, and in a couple of places were in various stages of recovery from DEC “habitant enhancement” cutting. In places the trails followed old roadbeds, while other sections were grassy, or cushioned by pine needles, or almost swallowed up by thick growths of ferns. The route was fairly level with only moderate changes in elevation, allowing the group to stick closely together (a necessary configuration where trails are not well-marked). A water break at the “saddle” (nickname apropos of the up-and-down curvature of hills there) and a brief side trip to a large woodland pond offered a couple of resting points before we wrapped up the hike at almost exactly the 2-hour mark. No falls + no blood + all 17 returning to their cars = a successful outing!

Photos by Jim

View Leigh Ann’s photo album.

Saturday, June 29th

Texas Hollow State Forest, Hector

Hike report by Leigh Ann

This may be the wettest and one of the most enjoyable hikes I’ve done with this group. When the sixteen hikers and two dogs arrived at the trailhead, it was raining heavily. It rained heavily all the way through the hike. 

The water table in Texas Hollow looks like it has risen over this rainy winter, spring, and summer because although the creek beds on the hillsides weren’t running, the water in the valley was very high. In some places it overtopped the boardwalk, with foot-deep water everywhere you could step. 

Once we decided that we were just going to get as wet as possible, it was glorious. We got as wet as possible and the weather was warm, so it was quite enjoyable. With that said, I’m sure several people removed as much clothing as they could before getting in their cars because, dang, that’s a lot of wet.

Photos by Jim

View Leigh Ann’s photo album.

Sunday, June 30th

Hulford road, Newfield

Hike report by Nancy Lorr

It was a beautiful clear and cool morning when 26 hikers and 4 dogs gathered at the corner of Boylan and Hulford roads in Connecticut Hill for a hike.  We started by hiking downhill along the blue blazed trail west of Hulford road.  The pine woods were shaded and cool and the hiking was easy on the pine needle laden trail surface. Emerging from the pines we spotted a few chanterelles. It didn’t take too long to arrive at a side trail sloping gently but quickly down to a picturesque series of small cascades along this branch of Carter Creek.  The showers a couple days ago provided some sorely needed water to the falls.  After a little stop at the falls we made our way over to Hulford road.  Some hikers used Hulford road to ascend back to the cars.  Others followed me on some paths through the woods on the east side of Hulford road.  Many of the paths followed old roadways.  Near the top we negotiated around a gully and up onto a series of trails along the edge of clear cuts.  Soon we went back into the woods until we reached the cars. Everyone was accounted for to make for a successful ending marked by a sudden but brief and cooling  rain burst.

Photos by Leigh Ann

View Leigh Ann’s photo album.