Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hiking In Fort Jackson State Forest, Part 1

It was a sunny, Sunday afternoon and I'd finished all my chores and shopping. Rain and colder temperatures were predicted for the following day, so I decided to take the dogs out for a short, nearby hike. I drove to the south Barrett Road entrance to Fort Jackson State Forest but decided that was where I'd entered last time. So I drove to the north Barrett Road entrance, drove several miles into the forest and parked between some trees. I had the feeling that we'd just been there recently but there was no turning back at that point. I gave the dogs a call and we headed out down the "road" to look for new, untried trails:

The forests were a brilliant, coppery gold wherever there were concentrations of Beech trees and it occurred to me that I seldom notice Beech trees unless they're giant or clad in autumn foliage:

We found a curious mix of White Pine and Beech, with sandy soils and lots of moss. Daphne, having learned my feelings on dogs running ahead, kept stopping to look and be sure I was well and she was within the allowable range. Good dog, Daphne. Now, to teach that same thing to Fergus and Clover:

Once I got to stop hollering "Clover, stop!" and "Fergus, stop!" every few seconds, the forest became a peaceful, mysterious and beautiful place for both man and beast:

And the natural beauty was indescribable:

In places with heavy Beech concentrations, it was downright breathtaking:

We began following what must once have been a road through the forest and it took us in the general direction of the river:

Mountain Maples had dropped their variegated leaves and they brought even the place where we trod into vivid, vibrant color:

I began hearing the St. Regis River as it dashed over rocks long before we could see it. And when we did see it, it was a beauty:

The downside was that somehow, and I never did figure out how, we'd managed to arrive at exactly the same spot on the river we'd been the last time. Well, never mind. We just enjoyed the present moment in the place where we were:

Madeline gave me her biggest, happiest grin:

But this, thus far, was only half a hike, so I'll post Part 2 tomorrow:

No comments:

Post a Comment