Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Fort Jackson State Forest - Part 1

We had a sunny, cool, breezy day and I decided to take the dogs for a walk in the Fort Jackson State Forest. There are three entrances, two of them relatively unused except by folks who live along the small road which leads there. The first one we tried was too muddy for my little car and I had to back up, turn around and try another entrance. This one was passable but so long that I almost gave up. But then I began to see State Forest signs, so pulled off the dirt lane and parked:

I let the dogs out and they exploded in an excited flurry of activity - running, sniffing, peeing and exploring. It's difficult to rein them in at the beginning of a hike:

I had to keep calling them back when we started, but they soon began to calm down and stay near me without any hollering:

The sandy lane was easy to walk and the scenery was lovely. All in all, this was a most pleasant experience. Oddly, there were no black flies or mosquitoes, but that may just have been because it was cool and windy:

Most of the forest was deciduous but there were sizeable patches of Red Pines also. I saw no White Pines, which I thought was odd:

I could tell that local people on ATVs use these lanes, and they have caused mud holes like this one. On foot they are easy to walk around, but if I had been driving, this would have stopped me:

I knew that we were close to the St. Regis river but I wasn't at all sure which direction it was in and the wind in the tree canopy made so much noise that I couldn't hear the river. We never did find the St. Regis, but I've since checked a map and will know where to look the next time:

These pictures look like White Pines, not Red Pines - so maybe my mind was on something else when we were exploring his section:

Canada Mayflowers, also called Wild Lily-Of-The-Valley, were in bloom:

And so were Starflowers. I saw no Trilliums or Ladyslippers:

But it was a lovely woodland and the dogs were happy. These, I can tell by the picture, were Red Pines:

I stayed on the main trail since it was steadily downhill and I figured would lead us to the river. But then I turned down another lane which lead even more steeply downhill and in a direction I thought the river was likely to be. But I'll post Part 2 tomorrow: