Monday, July 22, 2013

Part One, A Walk In The Beautiful Fort Jackson State Forest

I'd been working on the fence and chicken coop. Both were going very slowly indeed and I was tired of the daily grind. I had to drive in to Massena to buy a few things at the Home Depot and, during the trip, decided that I must not squander such an absolutely gorgeous day. As soon as I got home I put the dogs in the car and headed for the Fort Jackson State Forest, just a couple of miles away. I don't need to tell you that the dogs were ecstatic:

I began by looking for an access to the St. Regis River but never found one. I'll continue to look, though, as I'm sure there must be one. Finally I just parked on one of the dirt lanes crisscrossing the forest and let the dogs out:

I remembered my promise to keep them closer to me. That required constantly reminding the enthusiastic pooches, but they can have just as much fun close to me as they can running far ahead - and there's far less chance for unhappy surprises:

We walked down the lane a short distance and I saw this forest off to the side. It looked to me like the Black Forest of fairy tales and I just had to veer off the path and go exploring. The dogs, of course, were more than happy to accompany me:

There were game trails and fascinating smells, with almost no underbrush:

We headed back to the lane and continued on our way:

When we arrived at this old fallen tree, I called the dogs over for a photo op - but they were still too excited to hold still. Any photo op would just have to wait:

There were lots of forest types, both deciduous and coniferous. Some spots were sandy and barren, some were lush and green, some were recently cut and full of dead limbs. I stayed out of the recently cut places:

The lane took us downhill but I could see a game trail just off the road and decided that it would be more interesting. It was beautiful, mossy, primaeval looking:

We all went exploring in the forest. I kept track of where to find the lane lest we get lost, but otherwise we were free to explore:

But the time came to return to the dirt lane and continue on our way:

I saw this drop-off not far into the forest and thought the river might be there. It wasn't, but we had another short romp in the pine forest. This was just about the halfway point in our hike. I'll post Part 2 tomorrow:

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