Saturday, March 3, 2012

Part 3 - Hiking Down Beebe Hill

Once I'd descended the fire tower and collected my dogs, I bid farewell to the family from Pittsfield and began the hike back down to the trail head and my parked car. No one else was around by then, so I let the dogs off their leashes to run and play:

We passed by Opal Pond, still quite frozen over in spite of the mild weather. Little Clover of course ran out into the center of it and I recalled a spring hike several years ago when Opal pond was teeming with thousands of Wood Frogs. Wally was still hiking then and he wanted to investigate all those frogs, so he swam out to get a closer look. Of course they all disappeared when he got too close and I soon had a wet and frustrated Wally on my hands:

The top of Beebe Hill is quite broad and flat, so we had easy walking for awhile:

We arrived at the lean-to and went over to have a look - that is to say I went over to have a look and the dogs went over to have a sniff:

This old log with its emerald upholstery was home to both ferns and ferny looking mosses:

And a giant old boulder, presumably a glacial erratic, had big chunks of white quartzite glistening in the sun:

The boulder was also home to a large variety of mosses and lichens:

I was particularly taken with these round cushion mosses:

Ice crystals remained atop much of the moss, lichens and quartzite:

And then we continued on toward the trail head, the dogs sniffing everywhere as well as running and playing:

This photo caught little Daphne in full run, her normally curled tail plume stretched out from the speed and excitement. Just about then the trail began a sharp, muddy descent but I'll post about that tomorrow:

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