Wednesday, July 5, 2017

4th of July

Got up and out early for a run before our family hike. It was such a lovely morning - cool and sunny and no bugs! I had originally planned to run the cart paths but it was so nice out, I couldn't resist a few miles down along the river. A good 6 miles to start the day.

And then with what has become our tradition, we set off on a hike! Sam has gotten so much stronger this year that we decided we'd tackle something bigger, and decided upon a loop up to Tumbledown Pond. We hiked up via the new(er) Little Jackson Connector, which was incredibly lovely and hooked up with the Parker Ridge Trail for the ascent. The Parker Ridge Trail was a really cool trail, rising through the woods and then up and over open ledges, with wide views in all directions. Sam loved the rugged parts of trail and the ledges, climbing strongly all morning. Perhaps even better was that it was little traveled and we only saw two groups of people from the 3+ miles from the parking lot to the pond.

The pond was incredibly busy, but after taking in the views, we found a spot out of the wind and stopped for a late lunch break before descending via the Brook Trail. The trail was insanely busy and along with it being bit more technical and bouldery than we had expected, there was some struggle with a few tears, some complaints and one small fall on the descent. Of course, to be fair, I had had my own freak-out coming up one section of the Parker Ridge Trail when I couldn't get a grip on a rocky pitch, and besides, Sam is only 7 years old and overall, she did a really great job all day long on a tough loop!  We finished up with a nice 5.6 mile loop in 4:11 hours moving time/6:00 hours overall time out. A great day out in the woods!

View at the end of Webb Lake

Ready to head out!

Mushroom face!

Stream crossing

Silly kid ;)

Yellow PatchesAmanita flavoconia

Brook along Parker Ridge Trail

Snack break

Along the brook

Indian Wild Cucumber in bloom

Ledge fun

Sheep laurel was in bloom everywhere up high, looking lovely

Sam loves to climb!

Lots of roots

Up, up, up

View out to Webb Pond

I think this might be Gray Dogwood. Lots of it blooming up high with the laurel


Up on the ledges

Climbing up

Gorgeous high ridgeline

Up amongst the rocks

Above treeline

Cotton sedge

Cool granite, blue sky, mountain sandwort

Lots of mountain sandwort blooming amongst the rocks


Maybe, maybe just having a freak out trying to figure out how to get up this steep pitch ;)

Selfie with a view!

High on the ridges

Taking in the view of the pond and beyond

Our happy hiker

Lunch view :)

Me and the kiddo at the pond :)

Descending the Brook Trail

Many brooks, including this one, along the Brook Trail

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