Saturday, June 25, 2011

Part 1, Mountain Laurel Heaven

I'd badly torn a calf muscle 15 days previously, but on this Sunday morning I seemed to be walking almost normally again. The day was beautiful and the forest paths were calling me. So I got brave, loaded my four hiking dogs into my little red car and set out for Mt. Everett in Massachusetts, near the three-way border of New York, Massachusetts and Connecticut. The hiking trail began on an old service road, at first rather level but quickly turning steep. We began climbing higher and higher:

The last time I'd hiked Mount Everett, the wild Azaleas were in bloom. But I knew I'd see Mountain Laurels blooming in June. I was a bit too early as they were mostly buds, but still lovely:

Seamus has been on a diet and had lost enough weight to enable him to keep up with the youngsters as we climbed higher and higher. It was a great pleasure for me to see him having so much fun:

Mountain Laurels filled the woods and lined the trails. Seamus found this one a great spot to sit down and catch his breath:

At a bend along the path, a broad grassy area opened up and Daphne and Clover, the two Papillon puppies, ran back and forth at full speed:

Fergus joined them for awhile, but then found an interesting smell. When he realized that we were continuing on our way, he ran like crazy to catch up with us:

Mountain Laurel flowers are mostly white, but the buds are mostly pink:

The trail had become quite steep and my injured leg was doing OK. Seamus was beginning to slow down:

And then we reached the first overlook, where we could see out over the broad valley toward the Taconic Mountains. If you click to enlarge this photo, you'll see that the two pups continued running at full speed, oblivious to any scenic overlook:

We were looking out over Massachusetts and Connecticut from here, and the view was stunning:

Another group of hikers joined us and their Yellow Lab, Molly, was very friendly. She and Seamus struck up a friendship while the puppies mostly continued running at full speed. But we were only half way up at this point. I'll post more tomorrow:

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