Outdoor Adventures with Gary Lee - Vol. 122
I don’t think we have to worry about any forest fires unless someone is carrying around a can of gasoline. We got an inch and three quarters just last week, which made the little creeks run again and then today, 9/27, we got over an inch and it isn’t over yet. These rains and the winds that came along with the storm took down lots of pretty leaves and left the trails in wet conditions again. The trails are taking a beating this summer with all the rain and so many hikers using the trails. Most of the duff and topsoils are gone off the trails, leaving in many places just bedrock and roots.
Hurricane Sam is a category 3 going up the East Coast, but staying way out to sea. The hurricane names are running out just like they did last year. Over in Japan, Typhoon Chanthu traveled across Japan, injuring 7, before leaving the East coast on 9/18. It packed winds over 150 MPH as it crossed the country.
Many asters seem to be enjoying the wet weather and are all in bloom on the roadsides and in open areas. The prettiest are New England Asters, the deep purple one which, if it’s out, will usually have a Monarch butterfly feeding on it. When I was tagging them, I could always count on finding a few in big patches of asters and Joe-pye-weed. I didn’t tag any this year, but I’ve seen several in-route west. They follow the roads and if disturbed they just take off going west down the highway.
Another flower that comes out this time of the year is Ladies Tresses and where they grow, the Fringed Gentians also grow. Some new ones showed up opposite the horse coral on the Uncas Road. Many more are in the open field by the dry hydrant between Inlet and Eagle Bay. Another new spot is in the clearing going down to Independence Lake from the snowmobile trail. I saw several hundred growing in that area just before the gates closed for hunting season and a couple moose tracks in the mud there.
Went on several hikes this week visiting waterfalls, Ferd’s Bog and the Cathedral Pines. There wasn’t much water going over Twitchell Creek Falls or Quarry Falls, but then it rained almost two inches the next day and there was plenty of water to photograph running over the rocks. In the bog, the Pitcher Plant flowers were still sticking their heads toward the sky and cotton grass had their white heads flying in the wind. The big pines at Cathedral Pines are always impressive. Sometimes on a nice day, I just lay down under one of the big trees and gaze upward, thinking to myself how much these trees have seen go by in their lifetime. Then at Quarry Falls, just a short hike in from the road where the sign says Death Brook Falls, Death Brook comes down from east and Quarry Falls Brook, running into it below the falls. By the looks of the landscape below the falls, it was really ripping when we had those heavy rains during the summer, as it cut a new course below the falls. The red maples were just starting to turn there and should have good color for a photo this week.
On Saturday, I had the Moose Hike to Rockdam in the Moose River Area with eight people who were mostly wearing nice sneakers. There were some wet spots in that trail and there were lots of “ahs” coming from the group behind me and some dirty sneakers when we got to the river, but I had a great group. Even found a new orchid on the way out, but no moose tracks or poop in the trail. The Moose River was really roaring over the rock dam that day and if you were a kayaker, it would have been a quick trip in some pretty rough white water down to the McKeever Bridge.
On Friday coming back from Indian Lake, I stopped at the Rock Lake Trail, and I hadn’t been there in a few years and there sure were some wet spots in the trail going there. The little brook that runs along the trail was roaring under the Snowmobile trail bridge near the end of the trail. I cut a couple trees out of that trail that blew down during the storm and did a little drainage work. Once a ranger, always a ranger.
2021 Adirondack Loon Celebration on October 10th at the Paul Smiths Vic from 1 to 4:30 pm, guided paddle in the morning preregistration required for that limited number of people. Check the AdKLoon.org Website for events during the afternoon, but that’s another story. See ya.