February 25, 2017
The weather forecast for today was dreary, with rain predicted all day and and drastically plummeting temperatures. I hadn't planned on hiking. Morning brought stormy looking skies, but no rain. After finally finishing his ridiculously sluggish breakfast, Frankie was being crazy, acting like a a typical energetic six-year old cooped up inside. I started fretting about the prospect of an entire weekend of such behavior. It still wasn't raining, so I pulled out my phone and checked the weather again. The chance of rain was 100%, and I could see the wall of storm clouds moving towards us on the radar. However, it was almost 70 degrees out and the front wouldn't arrive until noon. Mobilize!!
February 23, 2017
Frankie was on winter break from school this week, meaning that with a little schedule finagling, we had a free day together for a mid-week hike. I was craving an adventure, something off our beaten path, and considered various options before settling on Chimney Bluffs State Park. I hadn't been there since I was pregnant with Frankie, and I thought he'd enjoy seeing the eponymous spires, pinnacles, and cliffs. Plus, there is the whole attraction of the lake... Kids love water, and he hadn't seen a Great Lake since camping at the Pinery last May. He wasn't thrilled about the idea of driving an hour to get there, but I brought along a new kryptonite for passing travel time: a sketchbook and pen. I think he was actually (briefly) disappointed when we arrived. He happily drew Calvin and Hobbes all the way home, too.
February 19, 2017
When I saw the gorgeous weather forecast, I was determined to get outside for a hike today with Frankie. It feels like my boy and I haven't been in the woods enough together lately. When I mentioned hiking, he suggested Beaver Lake. I'd been hoping to snowshoe, but with the freakishly warm temperatures this week, it seemed unlikely. I called the nature center and they confirmed the snowshoe trails were closed due to insufficient snow pack. Boo! But even with only a few short trails available for hiking, Frankie still wanted to go to Beaver Lake, so off we went...
February 8, 2017
I started this hike at the parking area on Circle Drive, and hiked west Stacy Basin, which was my turnaround point on my last hike in this area. The out-and-back was a total of 6.5 miles. This section of the North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT) follows the Erie Canal Trail. The portion of the canal between Circle Drive and Lock 21 is still actively used and appears well maintained, compared with some other part of the canal that are choked with blowdown and debris. This section of trail is also one of the more pleasant to walk in the area because it is not adjacent to a road. Woods! Hurray!