Report to Hikers June 13 – June 19

Wednesday June 15

Logan Rd. west toward Satterly Hill Rd., Schuyler County

Hike report by Jim

Twelve hikers and one dog met on Logan Rd. to hike west on the FLT to Satterly Hill Rd. and beyond.

It was a warm, sunny day  with clear skies as the group set out. We plunged into the tall grass concealing the footpath along the roadside and were soon crossing the first open field, its uneven surface hidden beneath the scraggly grasses. The trees concealed the blazes along the route, but soon we located the turn into the cooler forest.

We made our way through the woods, the undergrowth doing its best to hide the footpath but never succeeding too well. We reached the wooden bridge, which never fails to elicit comments from someone in the group about the construction. Wednesday was no different.

Soon we were climbing the hills. By the time we reached the old vineyards the trail was  nicely mowed, making the climb much more enjoyable.

Coming out onto Satterly Hill Rd., the group discovered that we were easily 20 minutes ahead of our turnaround time. After stopping to admire the views across the valley, we returned to the FLT and continued westward until we literally ran out of maintained footpath.

Turning around, we found our way back to Satterly Hill Rd., crossed over that road and began the long descent back to our cars. Along the way we stopped to check out some additional views from that slope that we had missed on the outbound uphill climb. We arrived back at our cars at the two-hour mark.

Other than some other day hikers we met on Satterly Hill Rd., we had the trail to ourselves the entire time.

A warm welcome to Lee, on his first hike with the group!

For those earning their FLT60 patch , today’s hike counted as 3.8 FLT miles toward that goal.

Photos by Nancy H.

Photos by Leigh Ann

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Saturday June 18

Hammond Hill State Forest from Star Stanton Rd., Dryden

Hike report by Jim

Seventeen hikers and two dogs met on Star Stanton Rd. for a hike of the green and yellow trails on Hammond Hill, primarily located on the north side of Star Stanton Rd.

Ithaca Hikers hadn’t recently hiked the green trails, and never in combination with the yellow-blazed trails, since I have been leading the group. With that in mind, I had a rough idea of the first half of the hike but left the route for the second half incomplete, so we’d have several route options, depending on our overall hiking speed.

The weather loomed somewhat ominously, and some arriving hikers reported driving through mist and rain en route to the hike. The wind was whipping through the trees and a light rain was intermittently failing. Overall, a much different type of weather than what we had experienced this week up through the previous day. I was quite happy at the turnout we had despite the weather!

We headed down Star Stanton Rd, turning into the woods at the green-blazed trailhead. We haven’t hiked this section of the state forest in a long while, and the change of scenery was welcome. There aren’t many overly long uphill portions, and the trail in general travels through some nice wooded sections of the state forest. Despite the somewhat gloomy conditions, it was a visually enjoyable section of forest.

As we hiked the winding green trails the rain volume picked up.  I hardly noticed the rain; it seemed that the forest canopy provided shelter.

Other than a single runner and a couple of bicyclists along our route, we had the forest to ourselves.

Eventually the green-blazed trails terminated at some yellow-blazed trails, which we took in a long loop back to Times Square on Star Stanton Rd. Eventually we made another arc back to the seasonal portion of Canaan Rd. After crossing there, we found ourselves passing through the stands of large evergreens that represent one of my favorite portions of the state forest.

We completed another large arc of the westerly yellow trails and came back out on Star Stanton Rd. near Times Square again. From here, we road-walked back to our cars, completing the hike a full 30 minutes over our normal time. No one seemed particularly concerned about the hike’s length. I plan to tweak the route the next time we hike this area in order to cut down on our time.

A warm welcome to Joe and Kristen on their first hike with the group!

For hikers working toward their FLT60 patch, today’s hike represented just 1 FLT mile.

Photo by Jim

Photos by Cian
Photo by Leigh Ann

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Sunday June 19

Hurd Hill Road into Shindagin Hollow State Forest, Caroline

Hike report by Jim

This hike ended up being nothing like what I envisioned when I scheduled the week’s hikes. Early weather forecasts predicted that Sunday would be rainy, so I planned an out-and-back road walk on Hurd Hill and Pleasant Valley roads in the Town of Caroline. We had hiked this route only once before, toward the end of last winter. On the day of this hike, though, it was sunny, breezy, and cool.

Seventeen hikers and five dogs, including late arrivals, participated in this hike.

The outbound leg of Hurd Hill Rd. is a continuous, moderate downhill that we completed much faster today than on our previous hike in winter. At the bottom of Hurd Hill Rd., we turned right onto Pleasant Valley Rd., walking along the lower areas of the Shindagin Hollow basin that we don’t normally get to see on our other Shindagin hikes. This section we also did in much faster time;  we arrived at the FLT and the Shindagin bridge 50 minutes after setting out.

Because we were so much farther along than I had expected in my hike planning,  I gave the group the option of doing either the return hike back up Hurd Hill Rd., or crossing the bridge and walking the FLT to South Rd., a trail section that normally takes us 50 minutes to complete on other Shindagin hikes. After arriving at South Rd,, we’d walk the mile or so back to Hurd Hill Rd. and our cars.

Most of the group opted to make the improvised loop hike, while a few hikers preferred the planned out-and-back hike.

The loop hikers climbed the FLT from Shindagin Hollow Rd. Before long we were at the Shindagin lean-to. With its wooded setting amidst the pine trees and the nearby stream, this is my personal favorite FLT lean-to in the county. Several members of the group were visiting this particular lean-to for the first time.

A small group of overnight campers was just clearing from the lean-to at our arrival, so we quickly continued toward South Rd. This section of trail, normally quite muddy, was mostly mud-free and has had some trail work done consisting of flagstones and a corduroy footpath surface laid down since my last time through this area.

Soon we reached South Rd. and set out on a leisurely road walk. We arrived back at our cars only 10 minutes over the projected hike time; the out-and-back hikers were just leaving as we arrived back at Hurd Hill Rd.

For those attempting the FLT60 patch this year, today’s hike counted as 1.5 FLT miles.

Photo by Jim
Photo by Nancy H.

Photos by Cian

Photos by Leigh Ann

View Cian’s photo album

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Report to Hikers June 6 – June 12

Wednesday June 8

Abbott Loop east from Michigan Hollow Road to Hill Road and beyond, Danby SF

Hike report by Jim

Fourteen hikers and three dogs set off on the Abbott Loop from Michigan Hollow Rd. The morning was cool and somewhat overcast, but the climb up the hillside away from the cars soon had people warmed up.

Our group last did this section of trail in April as part of  a multi-group hike of the Abbott Loop. Today the trail was in much better condition, although a couple of spots were still somewhat muddy.

After the initial long and steep climb, the trail levels out a little but continues the climb to Hill Rd. We crossed Hill Rd., where the trail begins a steady decline that doesn’t stop until the Abbott Loop tends at the FLT.

Turning west on the FLT, we soon emerged back on Hill Rd. We road-walked a short way up Hill Rd (this road is certainly appropriately named) before turning back onto the Abbott Loop and beginning our descent back to our vehicles. By now the sun had come out and the forest  floor was alive with alternating lights and shadows.

Welcome to Linda on her first hike with the group!

The hike today counts as 4 FLT miles for those attempting to earn their FLT60 patch.

Photos by Leigh Ann

Saturday June 11

County Line Loop, Connecticut Hill

Hike report by Nancy L.

Twelve hikers gathered at the trailhead on Connecticut Hill Rd. just north of Cabin Rd. for the hike on a cool, sunny day.  Some hikers parked at the Connecticut Hill Cemetery and carpooled to the start. 

We headed west on a wagon road and quickly arrived at the Brown Cemetery, which has a few very old tombstones – some from the early 1800s.  From there, we hopped back onto the wagon road. It  had ample evidence of homesteads, such as boxwood and vinca.  

The road intersects a trail that took us south to the Finger Lakes Trail. After checking out a ruin with an intact well (be careful not to fall in one during the winter!), we followed another wagon road (the ruts are quite wide) that goes north/south, tracing the divide between Tompkins and Schuyler counties.  

After a short hike on this road, we plunged into the woods following contour lines south and east.  After our only uphill portion taking us back up toward Connecticut Hill Rd (called Ridge Rd because it goes north/south on the ridge), we came to another old road. Cutting north through the woods, we encountered a small pond, then we crossed Ridge Rd. and headed north through the woods, now on the east side of  Ridge Rd.  

Our trail intercepted a watering hole, clearly manmade because of the rock dam at the outlet. From there, we continued north through the woods and across a small ravine, again joining the FLT.  Shortly after crossing Cabin road we followed a short trail over to where our cars were parked.

Photos by Leigh Ann

Photos by Nancy L. and Randy O.

View Nancy and Randy’s photo album.

Sunday June 12

Jim Schug Trail, Dryden

Hike report by Jim

Twenty-one hikers and five dogs met on Lake Rd. for a hike of the Jim Schug Trail. The weather was far better than I had expected, as it had been predicted to rain during the hike. Instead, it was sunny and warm, with some clouds gathering about halfway through the hike and wind beginning to whip through the upper branches of nearby trees at about the same time. Most people in the group seemed to enjoy having a hike over flat terrain on a nice day.

The group quickly stretched out over a longer-than-normal distance, the faster hikers pulling ahead of the rest of the group, including some late arrivals.

The trail was well-used during our hike, with many other walkers, bicyclists and runners sharing the space with us.

We detoured into Dryden Lake Park, paused for a group photo, and then forged onward.

The lead hikers continued on into the village of Dryden before turning around. Most didn’t make it that far, but we all covered a decent amount of ground in the hike.

After we returned to our cars, a good number of hikers relocated to Hopshire Brewery post hike. Once there, we continued the conversations from the trail while enjoying some local beverages and good food.

One issue that today’s hike brought up relates to parking; with hiker numbers rebounding from the Covid-related lows of the last couple of years, parking on Lake Rd. is inadequate. I’d like to get some views from the regulars about relocating our start point elsewhere for this hike, at least during the summer months when we experience higher participation. It would mean possibly losing the parts of the trail from Lake Rd. to Dryden Lake Park, which I know I personally enjoy. Please contact me with your thoughts.

Photos by Leigh Ann

Photos by Nancy H.

Report to Hikers May 30 – June 5

Monday May 30

Memorial Day Hike: Monkey Run Natural Area, Ithaca

Hike report by Jim

Twenty-four hikers and two dogs met on Hanshaw Rd. for a hike of the trail system around the north side of Monkey Run. The skies were somewhat overcast at the hike’s start, but  by the time the group had come out of the woods to skirt the open fields about halfway through the hike, the weather had  cleared and the fields were bathed in bright sunlight.

For the most part, we hiked a mix of red- and orange-blazed trails. The terrain was largely flat, although there are a couple of memorable stair climbs and associated elevation changes along the route. We diverted a couple of times along the way to check out viewpoints, such as the old bridge structure or the creekbed itself. Very early in the hike we were treated to the sight of a bald eagle swooping over our heads along the stream. I considered that the highlight of  the hike, and I know from hikers’ reactions that many other people in the group enjoyed the experience as well.

After reaching my planned turnaround point, we retraced our route as far back as the pavilion, bypassing the trails from the hike’s outbound leg. After we reached the pavilion area, we returned to our cars via the pavilion service road.

Photos by Cian

Photos by Mary W.

Photos by Leigh Ann

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Wednesday June 1

Allan H Treman State Marine Park and Cass Park, Ithaca

Hike report by Jim

Twelve hikers and one dog met at Allan H. Treman State Marine Park for a hike of the marina trails as well as trails along the Cayuga Inlet and in Cass Park and the Black Diamond Trail.

It was a great sunny day for a hike, and the group made quick work of the paved and graveled paths in Treman Marina. The most memorable part of that section of the hike was witnessing some smaller birds defending their turf against a much larger hawk in the air above the group. The cottonwood trees were releasing their pollen during todays hike, and so the air and ground were full of the white cotton-ball like seeds drifting around us and accumulating in clumps on the ground.

It was a popular hike and bike day, and all of the trails we walked were heavily used, including by groups of summer program kids hiking and biking in and around Cass Park.

After leaving Treman Marina, we jumped onto the Waterfront Trail , which loops around Cass Park and its skating rink before following Cayuga Inlet inland.

After reaching the Children’s Garden, we crossed Route 89 and waked to the southern end of the Black Diamond Trail. We walked that trail for about 20 minutes before turning around and retracing our steps.

By now the sun was behind clouds, the temps had noticeably dropped a few degrees and the cooling breezes had picked up, an omen of the rain predicted for the afternoon.

Photos by Leigh Ann

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Saturday June 4

Finger Lakes Trail and Lower Treman Park Trails

Hike report by Jim

Seventeen hikers met in the parking lot at Shady Corners for a loop hike through lower Robert Treman State Park consisting of parts of the FLT as well as the Rim and Gorge trails within the state park.

Unbeknownst to me there was an all day 50K trail runner event in the area that included the FLT and parts of the Robert Treman park trail system as its course.

After arriving at the parking area I asked race personnel about numbers of runners, race duration, etc. It sounded as if the race in that part of the course was nearly finished.

Our hikers arrived, and we set off on the FLT under the bridge. By the time we reached the park access road we’d already had to yield to several runners and I realized that we had to modify our planned hike route or we would be yielding to dozens of runners throughout our hike.

The group walked through the lower park campground to the access road that leads to the YMCA pavilion access road. We found that road lined with dozens of cars, presumably belonging to runners. We continued to pass dozens of runners who were using the FLT footpath while we stayed on the access road.

Our hikers made our way to the Rim Trail, which was marked as part of the runners’ course but was being used mainly by day hikers as best I could tell.

The hike along the Rim Trail was enjoyable, the coolness of the forested trail a nice counterpoint to the heat we were finding in the more exposed sunlit areas of the park.

Along the way we found a couple of downed trees across the trail, something that would have been a most temporary occurrence that would have been quickly corrected by park staff in past years.

Reaching the small bridge that straddles the stream below Lucifer Falls,we crossed to the Gorge Trail and began an uneventful return trip to lower Robert Treman State Park. I’ve always found this part of the trail system to be among my favorite for this park, dating back to when I worked for the park system in the ’80s. This hike day was no exception and this part of the hike actually seemed to go faster for me than it has in the past.

We arrived back at our cars with after 2 hours and 10minutes, as expected. From there, many hikers went to the Hesse farewell party at Rogers house. Watch for a separate post about the party!

Photos by Randy S.

Photos by Cian
Photo by Leigh Ann

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Sunday June 5

Taughannock Falls State Park

Hike report by Jim

Sixteen hikers and two dogs met in the parking lot on Jacksonville Rd. near Taughannock Falls Park Rd,. for a hike of the North and South Rim Trails of the park. I choose this meeting location because the park is now charging admission at the parking areas we normally use.

We did this hike in reverse direction from our usual route, first hiking down the North Rim Trail with stops at the overlook areas.

It was a great day to hike: sunny, warm, and clear. Park use by day patrons was high, so we were sharing the trails and overlook areas with a good number of other people.

After some quick pictures at the overlook area we continued down to the lower park area, where we hiked to the main falls observation area.

After several minutes there, we hiked to the base of the South Rim Trail for a return hike to our cars.

I found this direction for the hike to be a nice change from our normal counter-clockwise direction, so I’ll probably throw this into the planning for future hikes at this location.

A warm welcome to Mario and his dog on their first hike with the group.

Photos by Cian

Photos by Leigh Ann

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Report to Hikers May 23 – May 29

Wednesday May 25

Six Mile Creek, Mulholland Wildflower Preserve and Businessman’s Lunch, Ithaca

Hike report by Jim

The Ithaca Hikers filled the parking lot of the Mulholland Wildflower Preserve on the morning of Wednesday May 25th.

This was our first hike of the preserve since construction wrapped up there earlier this year. Unfortunately, the planners didn’t include an expanded parking area, so we were once again forced to jockey car positions to make sure hikers could squeeze into the legal parking areas provided. Luckily for us, a couple of members of our group had hiked to the trailhead rather than drive, and there was only one other non-Ithaca Hiker at the preserve at hike’s start.

Once we got the parking situation sorted out, 19 hikers and one dog set off up the trail in the direction of Second Dam. Temperatures were mild at hike’s  start, although the high for the day was predicted to be above 80. We encountered a few other people, mostly dog walkers. The trail was in great shape, with only one detour early in the hike due to an unsafe trail condition. With the lack  of rain there was no mud on the trail, although the creek was still flowing well. Trees and undergrowth are now in full bloom, so we were sheltered from the heat of the day.

The group scaled the short hillside leading to the Second Dam access road, and from there it’s like a seasonal road walk to the overlook area for the reservoir. When we got to the second dam area, there was a lot of recovered trash along the road waiting to be picked up; probably the results of Ithaca College’s recent graduation parties.

At this point I had a brain cramp and led the group onto the blue-blazed trail that runs along the bluffs above the creek. This had been my intended return route after going to the reservoir overlook area. Hikers didn’t mind a few minutes spent rewalking some of the same trail, and soon we were at the overlook area. Once there, we reunited with some of our slower hikers who had skipped the blue-blazed trail in favor of the direct hike to the overlook area.

The reservoir itself wasn’t looking very impressive , and with the leaves out the view was not as good as it is some months of the year. After a quick group picture we turned around and started the return leg of the journey.

We returned to the parking area, where some finished the hike. Others crossed Giles Street and walked down into the stone amphitheater that is Businessman’s Lunch Falls (Wells Falls). After a few minutes spent there checking out the falls and the stone walls surrounding us, we returned to the wildflower preserve parking area.

A warm welcome to Jaime, on his first hike with the group!

View Nancy & Randy’s photo album here.

Saturday May 28

Loop Hike: Dove Trail to Finger Lakes Trail, Danby State Forest

Hike report by Jim

Twelve hikers and two dogs met in Danby for a hike of area trails. Rain had fallen overnight, but there was no rain falling at the start of the hike.

The group walked down Bald Hill Rd. toward Station Rd., turning into the woods to climb the Dove Trail just before reaching the intersection.

Hiking the Dove Trail was mostly uneventful as the group made its way down the trail, the sounds of conversation behind me a constant companion.

The group soon reached a fork in the route; I opted to keep the group on higher ground as we continued on the Dove Trail. I knew from the recent Abbott Loop group hike that the Abbott Loop section ahead had been extremely muddy, and I wanted to avoid as much mud as possible.

The pink-blazed  Dove Trail continued up the hillside, never getting particularly steep as it traversed the woods. A couple of minor stream crossings were easily dealt with. The undergrowth was in full bloom, and recent rains made the various shades of green we were passing through really “pop” visually.

Eventually we reached the farther junction with the Abbott Loop and continued toward the FLT. Here the terrain started a steep descent to the valley floor; with rain starting to fall intermittently I was worried that the roots underfoot would be hazardous on the steeper trail portions. There wre no falls on today’s hike despite the wet conditions

We came out at the FLT junction near Diane’s Crossing, and began the climb back up the hill via the FLT.

We stopped periodically for pictures, to point out the lean-to location to new hikers in the group, or just to allow the stretched-out line of hikers to regroup before moving forward.

Eventually we came out onto Bald Hill Rd. By now the rain was falling harder, although its true quantity had been concealed while we were under the forest canopy.

We crossed over Bald Hill Rd. and continued on the FLT to Comfort Rd. After we reached Comfort Rd., we road-walked back to our cars in what was now a steady, though tolerable rain. We arrived back at the cars at exactly the two-hour mark.

Warm welcome to Anthony and Matthew on their first hike with the group!

For those trying to qualify for the FLT60 patch, todays FLT miles were 2.3 miles.

Photo by Nancy H.

Sunday May 29

Potomac Rd. Trails, Finger Lakes National Forest

Hike report by Nancy H.

Twelve hikers and three dogs met on Potomac Rd. near the campground on a beautiful, sunny morning. The day was pleasantly warm, with lots of sunshine and a few clouds scattered across the brilliant blue sky. The trees are now fully leafed out, so it was cool and shady in the woods. Jack V. led the hike.

We got on the Potomac Trail and visited a pond that normally we’d walk around, but Jack had determined it was too wet, so we continued toward the Interloken Trail. Trail conditions were muddy, and we made good use of the installed boardwalks throughout the hike. (Even so, I somehow managed to come out of the woods with mud up to my knees!) The weather was so perfect and the company so enjoyable, I don’t think anyone minded a little mud. The trails here are level, easy walking, so we covered a lot of ground.

Wildflowers were abundant throughout the hike. At Foster Pond, we saw large tadpoles and tiny fish along the shoreline. We met a family that was camping near the pond and another family farther along, but didn’t encounter any other hikers.

We took the Interloken Trail until it was time to turn around. We retraced our steps and then got on the Backbone Trail, which took us back to Potomac Road and the cars.

Thanks to Jack for leading a delightful hike!

Photo by Nancy H.

Photos by Randy S.

View Cian’s photo album here.

Report to Hikers Week of May 16 – May 22

Wednesday May 18

Fischer Old Growth Forest, Newfield

Hike report by Jim

Fifteen hikers met in Newfield for a hike of the trail system within Fischer Old Growth Forest. It was a beautiful, warm morning, an omen of the hot and humid summer months ahead of us. Trail conditions were nearly perfect, with just a suggestion of mud along some of the streams on the hike.

We set off from the parking lot, quickly crossing the open fields before hiking into the woods below. The trail winds its way through some overgrown weeds before it enters the forest.

We began on the red trail, following that to the promontory with the dedication plaque for the forest. From there we retraced our steps and continued on the red trail until we reached the yellow-blazed trail loop.

This is the area that has the most appeal to me. As you hike down a former logging road, the forest floor below is relatively open, so you can see quite a distance across the flatlands. The larger old growth trees are in this area as well, which is something I always find enjoyable.

Completing the yellow loop we returned to the red trail and soon found ourselves navigating some steep inclines along the stream beds, first climbing down one side and then scaling the steep banks on the other.

The trail passes over some old stone walls before finally completing its loop back to  the trail where we started. On past hikes, the group has opted to turn around and retrace our route on the red loop to make the hike last a full two hours, but no one opted for this on Wednesday.

Returning to the open fields, we followed the blue-blazed loop that goes through the open fields back to the parking area.

I am hopeful that at some point an additional trail loop can be carved out of the remaining land within the forest; we often run short on hike time, as was the case on Wednesday.

Photos by Leigh Ann

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Saturday May 21

Connecticut Hill, Newfield

Hike report by Nancy L.

Eighteen hikers (some new) and three energetic dogs met at the easy-to-access Tower Road location in Connecticut Hill Wildlife Management area.  We all parked along the east side of the road, allowing any traffic to pass without slowing. 

After a slight delay to collect the last-minute arrivals, we headed mostly southwest along dry, easily followed trails, with Nancy L leading the way.  We stopped at each trail intersection to keep the group together.  After about a half hour, one experienced hiker turned back, having accomplished his goal.  The others continued along a beautiful trail on the shaded north-facing slope before gradually turning south. 

We skirted a clear cut, following a new bypass trail, and reached a large pond.  We then retraced our steps on the bypass and elected to return via the more-travelled red trail.  This direct route back to the cars was welcome since the temperature was starting to climb into the high 80s and it was a slight uphill. 

When we were within sight of the cars, half the hikers opted to end the hike a little early, while the other half checked out a nearby loop for about 10 minutes. 

Overall, I think everyone was glad the hike was a little less than two hours…it was now HOT, and we were glad to be back to the A/C of our cars with all hikers and dogs accounted for.

Photos by Leigh Ann

Photos by Randy S.

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Sunday May 22

Stevens Suspension Bridge – Cornell Natural Areas

Hike report by Jim

Seventeen hikers and four dogs met in the parking lot near the Stevens suspension bridge for a hike of area trails. The day was sunny, with breezes and a hint of humidity to come.

After crossing the suspension bridge, the group turned to the southwest, following the Cayuga Trail through the woods. I was particularly interested in doing this hike today to check out the trail conditions after the recent repairs to mitigate winter damage.

The undergrowth was in its full summer growth, leaving us a narrow but clearly defined path through the woods. Once we’d left the open areas, the coolness of the forest closed in around us.

We completed the first trail loop and emerged onto the Robert Trent Jones golf course, which was seeing a fair amount of use. We stayed off the greens, following the edge of the course along the treeline.

Eventually we cut through the woods and walked past the equestrian barns in the area of Bluegrass Lane. Several foals were out of the barns, and we paused briefly to check out the horses before continuing on the hike.

We circled the fenced fields and then returned to the woods and the Cayuga Trail, taking the red-blazed trails on the bluffs overlooking Fall Creek. The trees have now fully leafed out, depriving us of any clear views of the flatlands below. Eventually the trail led us via a spur trail to the trail network on the flatlands along the creek and back to the suspension bridge. Along this portion of the trail we passed over some of the repaired boardwalk that travels through the muddier areas; Jack V had participated in the repair.

We crossed the suspension bridge toward Forest Home Drive, then jumped on the blue, red, and yellow trails there. This took us in a second loop; along the way we were treated to a lively pair of woodpeckers who followed us briefly before flying on.

We arrived back at the cars with 10 minutes to spare, but overall it was a great hike on some trails we hadn’t been able to visit for a few months. I was glad to see the repairs and the trails being enjoyed by an assortment of people.

Photos by Cian

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