Sunday, November 8, 2009

Harvey Mountain - Part 1

The weekend following the concert in Provincetown, I was tired and decided to stay home. No trip to the farm or to anywhere else. But when Monday morning arrived sunny and warm, I decided that I must get myself out to a mountain. I decided on Harvey Mountain, a nearby gem which few people know about. I drove down to Columbia County where the Taconic Mountains provide both excellent scenery and excellent hiking.

When I turned off onto the dirt road which leads to Harvey Mountain, I was dismayed to discover that there had been a whole lot of clear cutting going on:

I don't know, but believe that this is all state land. I noticed that it was only clear cut for a few hundred feet alongside the road. I can't imagine what the purpose was:

And then I was happy to realize that whatever their purpose, the loggers had opened up some beautiful views which had formerly been totally hidden:

These are the Taconic Mountains, smaller than the Catskills, the Adirondacks and the Greens, but with a beauty all their own:

We passed the clear cut area and arrived at the trail head. Seamus and Fergus were elated and wanted to run. I wished that I'd been young and thin enough to run with them, but alas, I had to plod along at my old man's pace. As you can see in Fergus' face, he's wondering what's taking me so long to catch up with them:

The trail is rather short, easily walked and quite scenic. The mountains are not too high and the ascents are not too steep. What an ideal hike for a sunny autumn day:

I reclined on the soft mossy slope along the trail and thought deep but contented thoughts as I gazed skyward through the treetops:

And then we proceeded on our way, Fergus and Seamus leading the way:

Most of the autumn color was gone by then, but this clump of beeches was an almost electric golden bronze:

At this point, I'd managed to get ahead of the dogs. They'd probably stopped to give a thorough sniffing to some smell they'd found. So for the moment, they're behind me but catching up rapidly:

If you click this photo and enlarge it, you'll notice that both dogs' ears are flapping. They're running happily. Their joy is contagious. It's hard to be morose when in the presence of such joy. This is but the beginning of the hike. I'll post more in the next several posts:

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