Saturday, October 29, 2011

Going Down! The Descent From The Ledges

We'd reached the scenic destination of our hike up to The Ledges, the dogs and I, and were resting at the top. The giant rock upon which we were located provided a nice view of the Adirondack Mountains toward the east of Route 30 and the whole area was clothed in autumn color. And yes, that is the trail below us, showing by Seamus' head. It really was that steep:

I was hesitant to begin the descent because I knew it would be steep, slippery and treacherous. So I waited until the dogs became impatient before I hit the downhill trail:

"C'mon, Dad. What's the hold up?":

I got one last glimpse of the mountains through the tree tops as we began our descent:

And then down we went. Daphne, being young, lightweight, four legged and athletic, had no trouble. But I, being old, chubby and two legged with a high center of gravity had to be more careful:

The trail downhill was quite steep and the fallen leaves over muddy soil made for treacherous footing. I moved downward slowly and carefully, trying to keep one hand on a tree in case I needed to catch myself to prevent a fall:

The sparsely marked trail was, however, much easier to locate on our way down because I could see where we'd traipsed through the fallen leaves on our way up:

It was unrelentingly steep but I didn't let that prevent me from stopping to admire the natural beauty all around me as we moved downward:

The dogs weren't tired, but they had burned off that wild energy which accompanies the beginning of most every hike. They were by this point calm and willing to walk at my pace:

I followed Daphne down this steep, moss covered rock, being careful not to slip or fall. There were many places such as this. We were making nice progress and would soon finish this beautiful autumn hike. But I'll post more about it tomorrow:


  1. Bill, I have always wondered how you never lose any of your dogs. I have only ONE dog, and I would feel like I had to constantly keep an eye on him to make sure he didn't go to far ahead, or wander off while hiking. Do your dogs just not tend to run off or wander far? Are you just amazingly talented at keeping track of them all at all times? Have you ever lost any of them for a time while hiking? I am in awe. :-)

  2. The four hiking dogs are very good at staying with me, though I guess I do have to keep after them from time to time to stay close to me and not get too far ahead. This is especially true at the beginning of a hike when they're bursting with excess energy and excitement. When I take rest stops with all six of them, it is indeed worrisome as Wally and Winky lag behind and the youngsters want to run ahead. So I have to keep an eye on all of them. And I count them repeatedly when they jump back up into the car. I guess I've seen too many sitcoms where a child has been left behind at a gas station.