Thursday, September 2, 2010

Exploring Dyken Pond Nature Preserve - Part 1

I'd intended to explore Dyken Pond Nature Preserve for many years but never actually gotten around to it. It's located up on the Rensselaer Plateau in Grafton, New York. I lived nearby for a couple of decades but was always too busy. But last Sunday was hot and sunny, so I took four of the dogs hiking. I feared there would be too many people, but when I arrived about 10:00 in the morning, I was the only one there except for a ranger/naturalist and her Labrador Retriever. The first trail began alongside the beautiful lake:

The dogs were, as usual, overly excited and wanting to run too far ahead. I figured they'd calm down as we traveled, so tried to refrain from hollering at them too much. They were very happy as they ran up and down the trail:

And the lake made a wonderful attraction for them and a photographic subject for me:

As you can see, this trail was only a few feet from the edge of the lake:

And soon enough we arrived at a spot where the dogs could access and enjoy the water:

The two puppies had seen mountain streams before, but they'd never seen anything like this. They found it very exciting and wonderful:

And then I came upon this double trunk tree growing horizontally out over the water:

I walked out the lower trunk to see down into the clear lake waters. When I looked back, the dogs had trotted along with me on the higher trunk. Clover in particular was very bold and agile, unafraid of anything:

We resumed our hike along the lake shore:

We came to a small inlet which afforded the dogs some shallow waters in which to play. Seamus is a water lover and the first to arrive:

He gave Clover a lesson in water frolicking, which you'll see in the video below:

The day was hot and sunny, so the dogs were all happy to get their feet wet and lap up some cool lake water. Clover surprised me by swimming right out into it (alas, I call her Daphne in the video). My calling her a "water spaniel" refers to the history of the Papillon breed, which was originally called the Dwarf Spaniel:

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