"So you're new to the Adirondacks? Where did you move to?"
"Oh - you're a hiker?"
"Um . . . well . . . I like to walk in the woods. I'm not a climb-up-a-mountain-and-hang-off-of-a- cliff kind of hiker."
"Well - if you're going to live in Keene Valley, you're going to have to climb mountains!"
* * *
Apparently "flat" hiking is not an option here in Keene Valley. So last Sunday afternoon, we embarked on our first official mountain climb. The High Peaks are mountains over 4,000 feet high. I think this one was about 400 feet high - but it was still a climb!
This is the trailhead for three trails. (If you click on the picture, it should enlarge) We were hiking the Town of Keene Ridge Trail. At a hearty 0.9 miles, we thought we could handle it!
Um . . . is this a bad sign?
Is there a bear in there? The girls love to explore. Notice their backpacks. They were determined to take along their "gear." I think they were prepared for a week's hike!
Who doesn't love a little mountain stream?
The trail was in pretty good condition considering the long winter. There were a lot of fallen trees and branches and a still few snowy spots.
We felt pretty good about our pace up the mountain until we were passed by trail runners. Then we were passed again . . . by the same trail runners. They'd completed the loop and were heading up again! Oh well - we were stopping to smell the pine along the way!
Although the woods are just awakening to spring, we enjoyed many little spots of woodland beauty - I continue to be amazed by the colors on the rocks.
New life poking through the matted leaves on the forest floor. Someday a mighty pine could stand on this spot.
Another tiny tree . . . I wonder if he looks up at the big trees around him and wishes he were all grown up.
Some kind soul put a bench at the top for us "newbies" to rest on. We sat for awhile enjoying our apples and oreos (yes, they make organic oreos!).
CorrieAnne checking out the view from the top with her trusty binoculars - packed in her backpack of course.
Wayne and Sodie heading down the mountain.
So there you have it! I'm not sure if we'll live up to the Sound of Music theme . .. "Climb Every Mountain," but at least we've conquered one.