Kristina and I went for what turned out to be a long hike in
Danby State Forest. The relevant guidebooks claim it is 8.4
miles, a lot of which is up and down steep hills.
The first part of the hike is to an area called Thatcher's Pinnacles. It is
above a steep cliff looking down over the Biodiversity Preserve (where we have
Down in the valley below all water drains
north to the Great Lakes, in front of me it drains south to the Susquehanna and
the Chesapeake Bay.
It is still early enough to have wild flowers, this is Fringed Polygala:
It was a grey and windy day which made the trees rustle. The trail
continues down and follows a meandering stream for a while:
We kept going until we got back to the road, and possibly foolishly decided
to keep on the loop instead of taking the road as a shortcut back to our car.
We almost passed by this bird which had a nest at eye-level.
We think it is a Solitary Vireo:
Not long after the wind blew something into my eye which I couldn't get out
until a few hours later. That was pretty painful. The trail continues
for a while in pretty scenery until it meets up with the Finger Lakes trail,
which took us back to our car.
In the State Forests near Ithaca you get scenery like the below. The
government bought up marginal farms back in the 1930s and planted trees, so
your trail suddenly intersects with these old tree plantations:
Here is out route:
The following week was busy, and the weather was very much like
early-Spring, not at all like late May. The rainstorms followed
by bright sunshine were perfect for rainbows; here is a nice double
one viewed from out our front door:
Over Memorial Day weekend, while waiting for Kristina's family to visit,
we went for a walk in Shindagin Hollow State Forest. It was a nice
walk, although there was a menace of catepillars dropping from the
trees onto us. This Forest is actually famous for its Mountain Bike
Trails, and we're not sure how anyone survives some of the steep trails.
Our book described a loop that started on the Finger Lakes trail but
then looped off of it (on unmarked trails) and for once the GPS came in
handy because we completely missed where we were supposed to pick
up the FLT the second time.
Here's a waterfall near the start of the trail:
Here's a GPS track of our walk:
And all too quickly, now the semester is over and Summer will (hopefully)
Back to late spring adventures