The Crooked Canes Journal


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Darling Mtn/Butler Pond ~ Dec 20, 2012

Journal entry by Ken Gericke



12-20-12

With weekend predictions of winter weather looming, Mother Nature presented 24 Crooked Caners with 1 more sparkling fall day on the trails. While most of Thursday's hikers met at the Warren County Municipal Center, a few were waiting for us at the Darling Mtn/Butler Pond trail head at the junction of Butler Pond Rd and Buckabee Rd in Queensbury. The trail up Darling Mtn is an old jeep road used mostly these days by the occasional hiker.

Today's conditions were slightly muddy with recent rain and a little snow melt forming small brooklets in places, and an icy coating on some rocks and leaves. But we fared very well, stopping often to chat, shed a coat, grab a drink, chat, take a little breather and allow all to catch up, and chat. At about the 3/4 mark of the ascent, by turning around and looking northeast, in the distance, Lake George..Dome Island..Long Island..Diamond Point..and Bolton Landing beyond. The final 1/4 mile of the trail is fairly steep through changing tree cover, from mixed hardwoods and pines, to the higher elevations dominated by scrub oaks. Essentially crossing the summit from east to west brings us to the scenic overlook. Wonderful views...to the north, Gore with its distinctive white ski runs, Crane Mtn, Potash and Hadley Mtns to the west, Spruce and Beech Mtns southward...and many distant peaks in 3 directions...a rewarding panorama for the minimal 1 and 1/2 mile trek.

Following the many oohs and aahs, and pointing out of landmarks, we reluctantly about face, and hike a short distance to a small open plateau for our snack/lunch break. "And what to my wondering eyes should appear?"...A little Yule tree with cookies placed near! We sampled pecan squares, Xmas sugar cookies, candy canes w/chocolate, pistachios and chocolate chip cookies, and mango slices....Yup! Mangoes! And Santa left a special gift under the tree for Tom Gibbs, a clicker/counter, so Tom can now get a 'precise' head count at CC events..at least that's the plan. Our little Holiday celebration was truly fun, reminding us all of the good folks and camaraderie the Crooked Canes share each week. Thanks to everyone...Tom, Don, Jim I Ray B, Fran, Lenore, Peter and Linda, Claire and Kirk, Leon and Karen, Katie and Ray, Karen Burke, Susan, Dale, Jim R, Diane, Joanne and her son Bruce, Nancy, and newbie Tim. With stomachs full of cookies and hearts full of good cheer, we head down Darling Mtn.

Near the trail head and cars we say goodbye to Katie and Ray, the 2 Jims, Nancy and Tim. The 18 remaining (Tom counted..19...OY!)set off on the 2 1/2-3 mile loop around Butler Pond. This trail on Glens Falls Watershed property is open again after about a yearlong logging operation, the temporary scars to the forest visible throughout. The afternoon sun, low in its winter arc, shimmers on the mostly iced over surface of the pond, signaling the end of another adventure. Happy Holidays to All!

Ken

12/21/12 - Ken Gericke added 1 photo.

12/21/12 - Jim Israel added 1 photo.

12/22/12 - Lenore Reber added 1 photo.

12/24/12 - Ray Bouchard added 6 photos.

12/25/12 - RayH Henrikson added 2 photos.

15 photos



Along the trail to Darling Mtn.



Our little Xmas tree...cookies too1



Tom opening his gift from Santa.



The Crooked Canes Family gathered around the tree.



Happy Holidays! - by Ken



Tom looking for the next hike - by Jim



From the Crooked Canes Holiday Health and Beauty Section. I'm doing great, especially in the care of my favorite nurse. Jack - by Lenore



Diane and Ken(alias-Secret Santa), at our special lunch spot. - by Ray



A view of Lake Vanare, and Potash Mt.just behind it, taken from the overlook. - by Ray



My best guess is it's a type of fungus known as a Jelly Mushroom. Regardless of its name it added a little color to the bland winter surroundings. - by Ray



After he read the upper sign Ken decided to have a committee meeting to see if we should stay on the trail or go home. The decision was unanimous, ignore the sign. We were hiking not driving snowmobiles. - by Ray



Butler Pond from the far end. - by Ray



An abstract design covering a puddle on the trail around the pond. - by Ray



Santa and Katie on Darling Mt. - by RayH



Ice on Darling Mt. - by RayH




From the Crooked Canes Lifestyles Section>

Lenore's Pecan Squares

3 c flour 6 t sugar 3/4 c butter 3/4 t salt

grease 5"x10" jelly roll pan. Beat flour, sugar, butter and salt in large bowl at medium speed until crumbly (and dry). Press firmly into pan. Bake at 350 until light golden brown...about 20 minutes.

Filling

4 eggs, lightly beaten 1 1/2 c sugar 1 1/2 c corn syrup

3 tsps melted butter 1/1/2 tsp vanilla 2 1/2 cups chopped pecans

Except pecans, mix all ingredients until blended. Stir in Pecans
Pour filling over baked layer and spread evenly. Bake until filling is set, but not dry, about 25 minutes.Cool partially, cut into 1 1/2 inch (or larger)squares, cool more and recut.



Joanne's Almond Tart Cookies

3/4 cup unsalted slivered almonds
1/4 cup sifted flour and
1 1/14 cup sifted flour
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted or unsalted--room temperature
1/2 cup confectioners sugar.
1 tsp grated lemon zest
3 tsp almond extract
1 egg
sifted confectioners sugar for dusting
cookie sheets--either grease them use parchment paper

1) In a mini-chopper or blender cop almonds with 1/4 cup flour until fine (less time if you want cruchier/nuttier cookie
2) Combine 1 1/4 cup sifted flour, confectioners sugar, butter, lemon zest, almond extract and egg...mix well
3) Divide dough in half ...chill at least 1/2 hour
4) Preheat oven to 350
5) Roll out dough on floured surface and cut out cookies
6) Bake 8-10 minutes until light gold
7) Dust with sifted confectioners sugar (while still warm)

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