Wednesday July 8
Braley Hill Road at the Finger Lakes Trail crossing, Shindagin Hollow SF
We now have five different hikes to do in this huge forest tract — each one feels different and distinctive — all wonderful
Unfortunately, three of the five involve walking on bicycle trails, and we can only do these when the trail bikers aren’t around — they’re much too rowdy a bunch to share the narrow bike trails with — you can get an idea of their riding styles from their trail names …. Ass Hammer 1 & 2, Widow Maker, Limp Dick, etc etc.
We had the forest completely to ourselves Wednesday — thanks to some fabulous atmospherics, it was one of the best hikes I’ve done in a while, cool, foggy, drizzling off and on, wet from a downpour overnight and a bit muddy — “I hate mud,” said one of our ladies — it turns out her mother had used a very harsh psychological trick to scare her when she and her sister got mud-covered when she was five ….
Official head count: Nine hikers, two dogs.
You can see six more photos online here.
Saturday July 11
Texas Hollow SF, Bennettsburg, followed by a get-together at Eckhart’s house in Enfield
Beautiful walk in Schuyler County, except that three hikers got stung several times each shortly after we stepped off — walking on the boardwalk shown in the photo above — seems like there are bees living in the wood and they swarm up when someone walks across the boardwalk — we avoided using it on the way back to the cars
The areas under the trees are exceptionally nice here — many pine groves and picturesque terrain
Official head count: 22 hikers, seven dogs
We had a great time at the get-together afterwards — Eckhart’s house is near the top of a hill and there was a lovely breeze, and we were able to sit under the shade of some pine trees right near his deck.
Official head count at the get-together: 19 hikers
You can see eight more shots by me online here.
Sunday July 12
Another beautiful morning on a fantastic trail, balmy but not hot, birds singing all along the way, not many insects
Lick Brook had surprisingly little water in it considering the amount of rain we’ve had recently — this is the scenic lower waterfall viewing area
and this is the upper stream where we’ve had some hairy crossings in the past. But there were signs everywhere of very high water, downed trees and big swathes of mud and gravel — there was obviously some major flooding going on recently.
Official head count: 21 hikers, eight dogs.
You can see eight more shots from this hike online here.