Friday, November 7, 2014

St. Lawrence County Reforestation Area Hike

It turned both cold and rainy one Sunday morning. By the afternoon, the rain had stopped but it was still quite chilly. I decided to take the dogs to the Catherineville State Forest, which had several trails off of Santamont Road, not too far from home. But I got mixed up on the unmarked, rural roads and stumbled onto a County Reforestation Area with a marked trail. I'm glad I stopped, because it was beautiful:

The dogs ran and played. For the last several years, I've been insisting that they stay increasingly close to me, reining them in a bit more with each new hike. They're finally beginning to get the idea and to understand that they can still run and play in spite of the new rules:

This was a fairly mature pine forest, marked with occasional bursts of golden color from the Birch trees:

The loop trail was disappointingly short but the scenery was lovely:

We ventured off the trail for a bit of exploration and I quickly realized how very easy it would be to get lost. I returned to the marked trail and decided to stay there:

Watching my happy dogs proceed up the golden lane, it seemed we should be singing, "We're off to see the wizard:"

The trail looped around and directed us back toward the road and our parked car:

An autumn forest is a fine place to be on a Sunday (or any) afternoon:

And I always enjoy seeing the dogs so happy, alert and alive:

"C'mon, Dad. Let's run:"

Clover loves to hop up on things to look around, but I seldom get my camera out quickly enough to capture it. This time, I did:

I wished this lovely trail had been longer, but was grateful it had been so beautiful. We returned to the car and began trying to find our way home:

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