The Crooked Canes Journal


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Crane Mountain hike ~ Oct 23, 2015

Journal entry by Fran Herve



After having to move our hiking day to a Friday due to a rainy forecast I did not expect to find many participants so I was pleased to count ten (including myself) at the trailhead.

The hike up Crane Mountain is a loop and we decided to do it counter clockwise because several guide books believe that it is easier that way.

The trail started pleasantly through a forest of hard wood. We enjoyed the moderate ascent on the leaf covered trail. Soon it became steeper and the boulders gigantic. The climb up the bare rock was slow but the temperature was cool and comfortable although cloudy unlike the meteorologists promised. Reaching a flat area with a stand of fragrant balsam trees gave us relief and a chance to catch our breath.

After climbing up two ladders without any problems we arrived at the summit and were rewarded with the most magnificent views. Lunch on a mountain top like Crane could last for hours but although the temperature was mild with no wind when we arrived, soon it became colder and we abandoned the idea of identifying all the summits listed in my trail guide.

The path started by descending gently but after a wonderful lookout with a great view of Crane Mtn Pond the trail became very steep, slippery and challenging for creaky knees and I even wished for a third ladder. As we were descending, the sky cleared up and the sun became brighter and warmer. After the trail leveled off we enjoyed walking through and kicking the deep carpet of yellow, orange and red leaves all the way to the pond. The trail took us along the South part of the pond where it became marshy. We could not resist taking more time to enjoy views of the lake and beautiful fall colors.

Another highlight of this day was exploring the tunnel-like cavern created through the rock by Putnam brook. Shortly after, we reached the trail that completes the loop and took us back to our cars.

Being part of this gorgeous nature, chattering with friends and welcoming Elisa, Marty and Carolyn made this a delightful day. Thank you all for joining me!

10/26/15 - Fran Herve added 3 photos.

10/28/15 - RayB Bouchard added 16 photos.

10/28/15 - RayB Bouchard added 2 photos.

10/29/15 - Wanderer . added 17 photos.

38 photos



From the left: Ray, Rich, Carolyn, Marty, Kendra, Elisa, Lenore, Peggy and Peter - At the trailhead - added by Fran



Views from the summit. - added by Fran



Blue sky and autumn leaves - added by Fran



FOR SALE- CHEAP: One pair of hiking boots found in parking lot. The soles are barely worn. $1.00 or BO- added by RayB Sold Ray - Linda and I were wondering where she left her extra pair of hiking shoes - with a litlle Velcro and some duct tape they will be as good as new! Linda and Peter



Peter, Fran, Rich and Lenore enjoying a brief respite and a chuckle. - added by RayB



Carolyn going up the first of two ladders. - added by RayB



Fran, leading the way. - added by RayB



Peter, Lenore, Kendra, Rich and Elsa chatting near the summit. - added by RayB



Someone pointed out strange objects growing (?) from the upper branches of the spruce trees near where the fire tower use to stand. Hmmm! - added by RayB



I'm fairly certain, based on a closeup shot, that a squirrel has pulled a spruce cone apart to get at the seeds leaving a stalk and the top. The identity of the white stuff is still a puzzlement. Is it a fungus, or perhaps ice crystals that have oozed out of the cone. Was sap part of the equation? I thought about climbing the ~8' high trees to get an answer to all those questions racing through my mind, but the branches were too closely spaced and quite prickly. I deeply regret not asking someone if I could stand on their shoulders with my muddy boots, in the name of science of course. - added by RayB



Peggy getting one last look at Crane Pond from its western shore. - added by RayB



Peter - added by RayB



One last look back from the outlet. Now it's time to make our way down the steep western side of the mountain. - added by RayB



A spruce tree struggling to survive in a few inches of soil. - added by RayB



A final view of Garnet Lake and Mt. Blue to the SW before we head into the woods and down, down, down. - added by RayB



Photo added by RayB



Peggy and Rich carefully picking their way down the steep, narrow trail. - added by RayB



Photo added by RayB



Fran, Elsa and Marty make their way through the boulders. - added by RayB



A peek inside the "Crane Mt. Cave". I could hear a small waterfall flowing under the rock at the bottom edge of the picture, but it wasn't possible to see it. - added by RayB



Lenore beckoned me after finding this beaver meadow a short distance from the cave where I was busy taking pictures. The beautiful fall scene was a fitting end to a great hike. - added by RayB



Hikers being swallowed by the forest .... - added by Wanderer



.... only to emerge safely on the other side - added by Wanderer



A flat, smooth part of the trail - added by Wanderer



Just follow Fran - added by Wanderer



Rugged terrain .... - added by Wanderer



.... and steep too! - added by Wanderer



Jumbled rocks - added by Wanderer



Rough but gorgeous path - added by Wanderer



The second ladder - added by Wanderer



Lunch - temperature quickly dropping - added by Wanderer



View S and Little Pond - added by Wanderer



A unique location for a cairn! - added by Wanderer



First glimpse of Crane Mt Pond - added by Wanderer



Looking back - added by Wanderer



Prom pic - added by Wanderer



The other side of the cave - added by Wanderer



A return to a flat trail and almost back to the cars - added by Wanderer



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