June 29, 2017
This is an incredible hike, just continuous non-stop jaw-dropping scenery from start to end. It was my absolute favorite day of an amazing trip. This loop hike is located in Naturpark Puez-Geisler, which is part of the Dolomites World Heritage Site. It starts and ends in the ski town of Selva di Val Gardena. We parked in a pay lot along the main street, then walked uphill along Streda Dantercepies for about half a mile before reaching the base station for the Dantercepies cable car. There was no queue, so once we secured our one-way tickets, we stepped into a small cable car for the speedy ride up. There is an elbow in the line, but we stayed in the cable car through the mittelstation, all the way to the end of the line.
June 18, 2017
Kranzberg is a small mountain located in the Bavarian Alps, rising from the western edge of the charming village of Mittenwald. There is a chairlift that carries riders part of the way up the mountain, with a hut located not far above the top of the lift. We planned a loop hike that started with a ride up the the Kranzberg Sesselift, followed by a hike up to the panoramic viewing area at the top of Hoher Kranzberg, then a meandering descent that would take us by two alpine lakes, Ferchensee and Lautersee. The maps illustrate five restaurants along the route: St. Anton, Kranzberghaus, Ferchensee, and two along Lautersee, so we brought snacks, but nothing substantial. We planned on eating lunch at Kranzberghaus, the hut closest to the summit.
June 11, 2017
Frankie first climbed Bald Mountain back in 2014, when he was three. It was his first fire tower hike, and the first mountain he climbed all the way both up and down on his own power. When he decided he wanted to complete the Fulton Chain Trifecta, I made sure he understood we'd have to climb Bald Mountain again. The rules are pretty unequivocal: You can complete the challenge in one day or take up to a year to reach all three summits. This didn't bother him at all. I honestly don't think he remembers the specifics of his first hike there too well, but knowing he completed it when he was three made him confident that he could handle it with ease now. And rightly so.
Rocky Mountain is part of the Fulton Chain Trifecta, a new hiking challenge consisting of three peaks in the Old Forge area that must be climbed within a calendar year. When I told Frankie about the challenge and showed him a picture of the patch, he wanted to leave immediately and get started right away. However, since that was a random weekday afternoon, and it is a two-hour drive for us to get up there, we had to plan a little better. We decided we could accomplish the challenge with two day trips. Today was a perfect day for hiking, so we set the alarms and headed up to get started with Rocky and Bald. Frankie was excited about the prospect of hiking two mountains in one day.
June 10, 2017
Since most of our recent hikes at Three Rivers Wildlife Management Area have been from Potter Road, Erin and I decided to meet at the parking area on Sixty Road and do the "turtle hike," which is what we have called this route since we saw all those hatchling turtles there back in 2014. We knew it would be too late to see the baby turtles this year, but we selected it mainly for variety. This hike is an out-and-back along a two-track service road, totaling about 1.8 miles. There are a few tiny little hills, but it's mostly pretty flat. It was the first time Frankie and I had hiked there with Alden since he's been hiking independently. He is such a good little hiker! I don't think Frankie was covering that kind of distance when he was 2 years old.
June 7, 2017
Another solo school day hike means more exploration on the North Country National Scenic Trail (NCT). Hurray! This section, in Baker School House State Forest, follows the white-blazed Finger Lakes Trail (FLT). I parked on Baker School House Road and hiked north, intending to turn around at Route 41 and retrace my steps back. The last 0.8 miles is on private property with a fall hunting closure, so I thought this would be a good section to check out now, in the spring.