There was another group hike with families from Frankie's school scheduled for today. The original invite indicated that the hike would be re-scheduled for Saturday (yesterday) if rain was forecast today. With a previous commitment for yesterday, and rain predicted all weekend coupled with with unseasonably cold temperatures, I wasn't sure if we'd be able to go, or even if the hike would be cancelled altogether. We are new to this group, and I just didn't know what to expect. I was delighted to find that the organizers stuck with the plans for hiking today despite the cold rain. They changed the venue to somewhere less remote, and moved the meeting time from late morning to early early afternoon. Meeting after lunch was definitely sensible, as picnicking in steady rain with temperatures below 40 degrees is not ideal.
We met at the boathouse and hiked Rolling Hills Trail > Rolling Hills Connector > Vista Trail > Power Line Trail > Brookside Trail > Round Lake Trail > Tween Lakes Trail > Green Lake Trail, for a total of approximately 4.3 miles. This is a fun and varied loop, passing through open meadows and thick forests, among vernal pools and along stream banks, and then returning along the shores of first Round and then Green Lakes. It did rain, of course. It even hailed briefly, when we were up on an exposed section of the Rolling Hills Trail. But the wildflowers are blooming, and the landscape is exploding with a cornucopia of infinite luxuriant greens. We even found a few small patches of morels, which were collected with enthusiasm. There is something magical about being in the forest in the rain... something that is not universally appreciated, apparently; Green Lakes was less crowded today than ever before.
Unfortunately, Frankie's friend Holly wasn't there, so he was not as independent as on the last group hike. Three of the other four kids on the hike today were several years older than him. However, they are great kids and they modeled great outdoor spirit for Frankie -- bold, with no complaints, and boundless curiosity and enthusiasm about vernal pools, fungus, eggs, birds, and all manner of associated things. The oldest boy wants to hike all 46 Adirondack High Peaks, and with a handful of summits successfully under his belt, is quite knowledgeable on the subject. Their family is planning a stay at Johns Brook Lodge to do some more hiking this summer. Yes! This! This is good stuff.
|marsh marigold (Caltha palustris)|