The Crooked Canes Journal


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Hadley Mountain Wildflower Hike ~ May 3, 2012

Journal entry by Peter



Hi everyone,

What a day this turned out to be – Fran, our designated leader, was not feeling well and thought it best to stay home - she asked Don to take over for her and then he asked me to write about it! I guess that is one way of sharing the responsibility (or blame). I have hiked Hadley more times than I can count but never intentionally on a completely cloudy day and not with 22 other people, some of whom I had not met before – now that is a bunch of people! The summit is known for its expansive views so that made it even more curious to me why so many people came out to hike when it was highly unlikely that they would see anything – the word is out – Crooked Cane events are the place to be – yeah, that must be it.

Linda and I drove directly to the trailhead parking and to our surprise the lot was nearly full – despite us getting there a few minutes early. In addition to seeing lots of Caners putting on their packs and visiting, the Glens Falls Chapter of the ADK had planned a hike, one that had originally been scheduled for Tuesday. It didn’t take long to realize that our crew from the WCMC hadn’t arrived yet so we had to shuffle some of the cars around to make room for them. They arrived within a few minutes, made some informal introductions to newcomers and we were on our way shortly thereafter. I took up the position as sweep and just shook my head as I looked at the long line of hikers, snaking their way up past the sign-in register, a moving rainbow!

The trail to the top of Hadley gains about 1,500’ in its nearly two miles so I knew the group would split into smaller ones as they reached the first steep section - which occurs almost immediately and, except for a couple of somewhat flat sections, maintains its steepness all the way to the fire tower. There are also several water crossings that slow up hikers as they pick the “best” route through or around – perhaps everyone would meet up on top. The trail was wet from recent rains and is exposed rock for almost its entirety- this isn’t a problem going up but could be very slippery on the way down but I needn’t worry about that now – I had to pay attention to Ray explaining what flowers Mark T. and I were looking at. Mark is a newcomer to the Canes – he told me his last name but it had lots of letters and I think only one was a vowel so he goes by Mark T. Most of you know that I am somewhat interested in the names of flowers and birds but it doesn’t matter how many times I am told their names I forget. Ray, an ex-teacher, never gives up on me – he thinks repetition will eventually succeed - I’ll let him have his fun – Linda can vouch that I am hopeless. There were lots of wildflowers to be seen but most were drooped by the weight of clinging raindrops. I took pictures of some Trilliums but most had already started to turn brown on their edges – maybe Ray had better luck. Although the air was moist, the temperature was good for hiking and there weren’t any bugs so I was happy about that and hoped my feelings were shared by others.

We eventually made it to the top and, although it was crowded, many of our group that arrived earlier had gone to explore the ridge beyond the tower and see the “Rock Creatures.” These rock sculptures have been created by visitors over the years and have become a destination for those that know about them. Their shapes take on whatever your imagination allows you to see – like cloud formations - some might see an alligator while another may see just a bunch of rocks. Many of our group who had visited the top of Hadley in the past had never heard of them so it was good that they had another reason to be here – it certainly wasn’t for the views, they were non-existent. In addition to the sculptures there were many varieties of mountain moss and lichen waking up from their winter’s dormancy to look at.

Somehow our entire group had managed to return to the tower area and continued with lunch. It turned out to be Karen Burke’s birthday and she surprised us with homemade chocolate cookies made by her sister – some with walnuts and others with pecans, so they must be healthy! I managed to convince Lenore to gather as many people as she could and she led us in singing “happy birthday” to close out our time on top. As always it was time to start down with smaller groups of people departing at staggered intervals. I was the sweep again hiking down mostly with Diane and Linda, arriving at the almost empty parking lot - Don was good enough not to abandon Diane since she carpooled with him but he did point to his watch and said the bus was departing in one minute. Karen and Gail said goodbye for their return journey on the backroads to Fonda and Schoharie and Linda and I followed Jack, Lenore and Tom back through Lake Luzerne. Jack said he tried to avoid stopping but his vehicle is programmed to stop at Stewarts after a CC event so we had one last visit while enjoying our after-hike treats.

Thanks to all who attended – I think this is a complete list (please contact me for additions or corrections):

Don, Tom, Bob MacMahon, Frank Schaefer, Karen Burke and her friend Gail from Schoharie, Jack and Lenore, Jim Israel, Jim Ralston, Leon and Karen, Lynn, Linda, Ray Bouchard, Ray Henrikson, Nancy, Ken, Judy, Shelley, Diane, Mark T.

Peter

5/4/12 - Wanderer . added 13 photos.

5/4/12 - Ken Gericke added 6 photos.

5/6/12 - Ray Bouchard added 1 photo.

5/6/12 - Ray Bouchard added 5 photos.

5/6/12 - Ray Bouchard added 10 photos.

35 photos



Big Burl on a Small Black Cherry Tree - by Wanderer



Tower in the Mist - by Wanderer



Flower and Fungus - by Wanderer



Reindeer Moss - by Wanderer



Mountaintop Bouquet - by Wanderer



Rock Creature I - by Wanderer



Rock Creature II - by Wanderer



Rock Creature III - by Wanderer



Rock Creature IV - by Wanderer



Cairn and Karen - by Wanderer



Trailside Rock Formation - by Wanderer



Orange Newt - by Wanderer



Trailside Streamlet - by Wanderer



Unusual rock formation. - by Ken



Shy forest creature...Lenorus Adirondackus - by Ken



OH OH! - by Ken



Creative Cairns - by Ken



Dragonfly Cairn - by Ken



More Creative Stonework - by Ken



Photo by Ray



Photo by Ray



Photo by Ray



Dutchman's Breeches - by Ray



Dwarf Ginseng - by Ray



A Foam Flower almost in bloom - by Ray



Purple Trillium - by Ray



Purple Trillium, up close and personal - by Ray



Wild Oats, Sessile Bellwort - by Ray



Wild Oats blossom - by Ray



Solomon's Seal not quite in bloom - by Ray



Trout Lily or Dog Tooth Violet - by Ray



Trout Lily. There were literally thousands growing all over the summit area. - by Ray



Yellow Violets - by Ray



? Perhaps someone can identify this one for me. I either couldn't find it or perhaps overlooked in all 3 of my reference books. - by Ray



This photo of Blue Cohosh is courtesy of the USDA website. I include it because there were several plants along the trail but my pictures didn't do it justice. - by Ray



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