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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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Thursday, April 30, 2015

4/29/15 Essex Woods

More unsettled weather. Periods of drizzle alternating with sun and clouds. Rain this morning again. We just went to Essex Woods for a short walk. Neither of us was excited about getting out. There is also a dog park at the woods but Kelley was not interested in playing with the other dogs and I only took a couple of pictures

Still not looking like spring

Doesn't have to be clear water

After our brief walk we went home and I worked on getting the garden ready and Kelley just loafed. Supposed to be clear this weekend and we will do better.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

4/28/15 City Forest

Yesterday was mostly rainy and we just walked around the neighborhood. This morning stated out the same way but when it looked like it was clearing we headed for the nearby forest. We started from the top of the meadow and headed down to the beaver pond.

Sun by the time we got there !

And a swim for Kelley

There were other pools of water and she took advantage of many of them

We took a side trail over to the old rail bed and followed it back to where it connects with the west trail.

But first we checked out the marshy section we had been able to cross when frozen. Not until next winter.

When we got up to the West we met a nice couple and their dog that we see fairly often and walked back with them.

We turned off toward the beaver pond and one more swim for Kelley

And up the hill to the car

Turned out pretty well. we enjoyed walking and chatting and Kelley enjoyed all the water. Several more dreary days forecast - it is raining again as I write this. i'm also trying to get some of the garden ready for planting. 

Monday, April 27, 2015

4/26/15 Partridge and Ducktail Ponds

Forties and mostly cloudy with rain forecast - it held off until we got home - and we did get a few peeks of sun.

Still looking kind of wintry

Pano of Partridge Pond - please click for large version

Partridge Pond  4-26-15

View of the shore. We cross a shallow to stream to get to that ledge for our apple snack. Kelley remembers and waits for me to get the apple from my pack.

In case you thought the snow was all gone.

Ducktail pano - please click for large view

Ducktail Pond  4-26-15

Outlet from the end of the pond

Ducktail shore

One last time in the water near the end of the hike

A pretty good hike. The temperature was comfortable, Kelley was enthusiastic, and an it was an easy hike for her. We met a nice group of people and their dog and that made Kelley happy. 1  1/2 hours 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

4/25/15 Perch Pond

Forty and cloudy with rain forecast. We hadn't been here in quite some time because of all the snow. Today the parking lot, as well as most of the trails were clear ( only small patches of snow) .

Kelley was excited because it had been so long that there were lots of new smells. There was also lots of water.

The small pond shown on the map.

Still not looking much like spring

We sometimes  get off track on these trails but today we actually followed the map to the pond.

More swimming ( pictures of Kelley not focused ), an apple snack, and we made the loop back toward the start.

A reminder

We would have liked more sun but it didn't rain and the woods were pleasant. We met three runners, who stopped and gave Kelley some attention, but otherwise had the woods to ourselves.  2  hours

Saturday, April 25, 2015

4/24/15 Kenduskeag Stream Trail

Yesterday we awoke to light snow and a dreary day. Kelley didn't want to get in the car so we just walked around the neighborhood.

Another dreary day with light rain and more forecast. When it stopped we went to the nearby Kenduskeag. Kelley usually likes this because the trail , which starts near home, follows the stream to downtown but today the water was very high and swift. She likes calm water and opted for a pool along the trail

The trail still looks very wintry

At a wider point in the stream where the water was calmer, she ventured into it.

From a bridge over the stream near downtown

We took a little loop through a small part of town to get back to the trail and Kelley was able to meet several friendly people.

Near the end we saw these guys who had just put into the stream. They were going with the current and I wondered about their return trip.

Not a bad outing on a kind of dreary day. Still no wildflowers but at least we didn't see any snow.  1  1/2 hours 

Thursday, April 23, 2015

4/22/15 Eliot Mountain - Harbor brook

Yesterday it rained most of the day so we just walked around the neighborhood. Rain is forecast again today ( and for the next few days) but we started out in mostly sun and upper 40's.

I ended up with most pictures out of focus today ( I'm not sure why) so documentation is spotty.
Last time we checked here the trailhead sign was buried in snow. Today it was clear and the trail was also mostly clear of snow- lots of water though.

There were parts of the trail that had been turned into small streams. No problem for Kelley. The summit is wooded and the only view is from an outcropping near the top.

The Asticou Trail which we take to reach Harbor Brook was also mostly snow free with some small patches beside the trail along with more water. Trail crews have done a lot of work with stone slabs.

The trail continues across the brook and they have replaced the wooden bridge with stone blocks

But we turn here and take the trail that closely follows the brook. We were surprised to find a lot of snow still on this trail.

Though the trail and stream were pretty it was harder going for Kelley.

She was smart enough to use  the depressions I caused but I could see she was still struggling. They are building a new trail that is "finished" from the brook to where it meets the trail from the mountain trail to Thuya Gardens. It starts out as the old trail down from the summit,and then branches off. I had thought I found that spot but had not and we were soon bushwhacking. I decided we would eventually hit one of the trails and we were out of the snow and so we continued. We came out on the Eliot Mt. trail below the intersection but that was Ok and we took it back to the car. An interesting and varied hike. Kelley liked it except for the fairly deep snow- which was also a slog for me.  2  1/2 hours 

Monday, April 20, 2015

4/20/15 City Forest

Yesterday Kelley didn't want to get in the car so we just walked around the neighborhood and then took the day off. She slept in the drive and I sat nearby and read.

Upper 40's this morning, sun but clouding up with rain forecast. We headed for the forest to get in a hike before the rain.

We started from the end of Kittredge Rd. which we hadn't done in a long while because of the deep snow in the meadow and the frozen pond. Today the ice was out of the pond. We like this route because Kelley gets the pond at the start and the end of the hike.

and there was also lots of water along the trail

We took the West Trail which was mostly clear but still had sections of snow

We then came back on the old rail bed which was clear of snow

but still some patches of ice in the water beside the trail

The side trail back to West was a mix of clear trail, water, and patches of snow but mostly not bad.

Into the pond on the way out.

Kelley seemed Ok today. She really liked all the water and being able to explore a bit off the trail because the snow was gone. We also met several people, including a woman who recognized us, and a couple of dogs - Kelley also liked the people and dogs. It was pretty gray by the end but it did not rain until late in the day. 1  3/4 hours 

Sunday, April 19, 2015

4/18/15 Down East Sunrise Trail

Yesterday was rainy in the morning so we did a short walk around the hood and Kelley had a day off and had sun in the afternoon. . I sowed pepper seeds - inside.

This morning was sunny but still a problem of finding a trail with  good footing. Decided to check out the area around Franklin again and found the Dynamite Brook and Myrick Pond Roads still not plowed and the hidden ponds parking lot also still covered with snow. Back to Franklin and the Sunrise. We started from the same place as last time but went the other direction- toward Elsworth - a section we had not done.
48 and sunny at the start overcast and 54 at the finish.

Even this trail, which is fairly open,still had patches of snow and ice along with muddy spots.

There was a small sign saying this was Mill Brook - seemed to be well over it's banks

Kelley seemed to be doing well. She liked that there were lots of new scents  and there was lots of water along the trail which she took advantage of many times.

Had to try out the macro lens I hadn't been using during our winter hikes

This was not an especially scenic section of the trail but it was easy walking for Kelley and warm enough for shirt sleeves on the way back.  2  1/4 hours