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So as not to repeat myself excessively, I am reducing the amount of description of trails that have already been posted. Please use the search function ( upper left) to find older posts which have more detailed trail descriptions and pictures. You can also use this to find specific hikes either by trail or mountain.

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Friday, April 17, 2015

DeMeritt Forest 4/16/15

Nice sunny day. This was to be a short hike to scout out the trails for a weekend hike my friend and some of her friends are planning. Kelley was difficult to get in the car. She didn't seem to want to hike and showed little enthusiasm once we started - except for the water. I was trying out a new lens and did not do well with the pictures.

We went in on Sewall Rd. which was completely clear.

The side trails were a mixed bag- parts clear and parts still with a fair amount of snow.

Back on Sewall coming out

The woods were still pretty and my friend got a feel for the trail conditions so not bad for a short outing. Kelley never did get excited and spent most of the rest of the day lying on the drive in the sun. 

Thursday, April 16, 2015

4/15/15 Newport Dover-Foxcroft Rail-Trail

Melting continues so we chose another rail-trail. Since the beds were built up you don't end up wading through marshy areas. We started from Dover-Foxcroft but because the map lacks detail I cannot show where we ended.The trail is 27 miles long.  A nice day -  forty eight degrees and sunny with a little wind.

At the start, just before you cross the river the ground was bare, as was the bridge.

and the ice is gone out of the river

Once across the river there was still snow and ice but Kelley and  quickly found some water

Melting ice

Further along the trail was mostly snow covered and it still looked like winter

The stream had also lost it's ice

One of the areas of dead trees- I think the result of beaver's flooding the area.

Heading back

and more melting ice

Turned out to be a nice hike - mostly good footing with only a few small muddy patches and mainly still packed snow. Kelley was enthusiastic and there were numerous opportunities to get into water. She took advantage of many of them. The weather was fine and we had the trail to ourselves  2  1/2 hours 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

4/14/15 City Forest

Raining when we got up so stalled until it started to clear. A friend came by and we all decided on a brief hike at the City Forest. The West Trail still had a fair amount of snow and was a bit of a slog but it was comfortable temperature-wise.

Kelley wanted to check out the beaver pond. Still mostly frozen.

but there were some thawed spots.

After that I ended up talking instead of taking pictures. My friend didn't have a lot of time so we cut over to the Loop and Main Rd. for an easy walk back.I was also concerned about Kelley and the soft surface on the trail.  Along with the pond Kelley found some pools of water to get into and was happy. Pleasant but short hike  - 1  1/4 hour 

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

4/13/15 Lagrange Rail-Trail

Yesterday Kelley was not much interested in hiking. I think the Sear's Island hike had been too much with the rocks and the deep snow. Finally got her in the car to go downtown for a short hike. I usually let her pick the route and she took us in a small circular route back to the car. She rested outside the rest of the day.

A sunny day with a promise of above normal temps and Kelley was, again, ready to go. Lots of mud because of the rain and above normal temps so the challenge was finding a place to hike Decided this trail was a good bet because it's a built up old rail bed.

We started from the town office ( very small town ) rather than the start shown on the map and were surprised to find there was still a good bit of snow. The bare ground in the background is a road we cross at  the start.

There were a few icy spots, and fewer bare spots but it was mostly nicely packed snow.

Not sure why this beaver lodge still has so much snow around it.

Another section of the trail

and a small stream we crossed

Water for kelley

Still lots of ice around

Alder branch

Part of one of the gates

Another chance to get in the water

Probably cut when the trail was cleared for this winter

This turned out very well. Kelley was enthusiastic and ahead of me the whole way and she showed no signs of discomfort. She was very happy with several opportunities to get in the water. Beautiful sunny skies and it warmed into the 60's. When we stopped to have our apple break and turn back I put my jacket in the pack and it was shirt sleeve hiking for the  first time in many months. We met no one and so had it all to ourselves.

2  1/2 hours 

Sunday, April 12, 2015

4/11/15 Sears Island

Yesterday it rained most of the day ( and part of the night) and we ended up just walking the neighborhood. Kelley did get to play with her friend Homer and that made her happy.

This morning the problem was finding the least wet place to hike. There is also some leftover snow. We decided to try Sears Island  where we hadn't been in a long time.

Forty five, mix of sun and clouds, very windy, but the tide was right ( at high tide you can't walk some shore sections without getting wet ) .  We stated out along the west shore- easier for Kelley because not as rocky - but the wind was very strong so we switched sides which was a big improvement.

Kelley was in the ocean - I was too far away for a shot - but she found water in many places - there are small streams of fresh water that flow from the interior of the island.

Looking back

Sea plants

There is a long section before the Blue Trail that is mostly large rocks and difficult for both of us to navigate. Today the snow kept us from some of the easier spots. I could tell Kelley was tired of dealing with the rocks and we were both  glad when we could get off the beach. More snow on the Blue trail and it had a lot of trees down from the winter weather.

But there was water

The gravel road was clear of snow and had lots of large puddles but when we turned off onto the Homestead Trail there was a lot of snow. This turned out to be a mistake for both of us - a real plod with Kelley also breaking through the crust. I broke through snow and ended up in water over the tops of my boots.

But Kelley also found water to get into.

We were both glad when we reached the shore and headed for the car. It had turned out to be a challenging hike - it's usually mostly easy. Kelley seemed a bit stiff so tomorrow will be something short and easy.

2  1/4 hours 

Friday, April 10, 2015

4/9/15 City Forest

We awoke to fresh snow. Only an inch or two at home. When we got to the forest  we found  three or four  inches-  only a couple of miles from  "as the crow flies" .

We met a woman with her dog near the start but soon passed where she had turned around and the trail was unused. Still, the footing was pretty good as the base underneath had a chance to freeze overnight.

The side trails all have had little or no use and the snow is still quite deep and not supportive.

Charlie Brown Christmas tree

We tried the old rail bed but it was too soft and so returned on Main and the Loop Rds. where we met only one man. A nice little hike - temps in the lower thirties and no wind. Kelley like the loose snow and seemed to be her old self. The new snow made the woods pretty.  1  1/2 hours