The Crooked Canes Journal


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Pilot Knob Ridge ~ Apr 18, 2017

Journal entry by Kurt Wisell



Well, the weather gurus really fouled up their forecast for our hike on Tuesday predicting perfect hiking temperature, no wind and crystal clear sky. They erred in that the forecast actually was exactly as advertised! They're likely not to let that happen again for a while! NINE Crooked Canes took advantage of the perfect day with the perfect outing: Pilot Knob Ridge. Seven arrived at the top of the ridge via the Inman Pond trail and not-really-a-bushwhack to the col (which wonderfully had no snow left in it!) between the ridge and Pilot Knob Mountain, meeting a Birthday Boy and another special Cane on the ridge who had elicted to ascend via the "front way" which, like the "back way" is also not-really-a-bushwhack though pro and anti whack forces battle strenuously to re-mark and re-unmark the trail that doesn't exist except in reality.

My primary reason for ascending "the back way" was that a few folks said they had never been on Pilot Knob Ridge. The huge grins folks have upon their first view from the top is so pleasurable to witness. Of the four 'newbies,' two figured out they had been there before, leaving only two trying not to hurt themselves tripping over their broad smiles upon reaching our lunch spot where it was warm, windless, the sky blue, the lake blue-er and the comaraderie special. It was a looooong lunch and nobody wanted it to end. But...

...after congratulations, best thoughts to the Birthday Boy and a picture, we headed down the "front way," everyone thinking (noisily out loud) that "on my 83rd birthday I want to be just like Don!!!" The "front way" down offers a half dozen or so great overlooks, each seemingly better than the last, and at each one, all thoughts turned to "I really don't want this outing to end" and we all sprawled out on the warm rocks far longer than any usual CC rest stop. After the last overlook on the trail that does not exist we headed for yet one last overlook on another trail that does not exist either but which makes a loop starting near the bottom of the Buck Mountain / Inman Pond trail and goes to Stewarts Ledge and back to a point a hundred feet or so below the other end of the loop. For as little effort as is required to get to the one tenth mile or so Stewarts Ledge, the views are astounding. Once atop Stewart Ledge, we viewed baby ravens, from a distance, in their nest then did what we were doing so very well all day and couldn't get enough of: relaxing, enjoying the perfect day and wishing the short walk to our cars was a hundred miles long with lots of sunny overlooks.

Thanks for a really great day to Gail, Margie, Linda F. (and this is NOT the one who lives in Greenfield!), Scott (Welcome back!), Claudia, Shelly, Bonnie and Don.

4/20/17 - Scott Anderson added 8 photos.

16 photos



First glimpse of Lake George from the top of the "back way" to Pilot Knob Ridge.



Lunchtime rendezvous with Don and Bonnie at the top.



Congratulations, Mr. McMahon, from all of the Crooked Canes on your 23rd Birthday!



Shelly in a good place with a trail under her feet, a ski area in the background and a lake just below. Perfect!



Young ravens.........



......and young crows. Sorry, I just couldn't resist the caption!



YES! At last! Flowers return!



Thank you, Kurt, for a really great hike. And thank you Mr. Weather, too! - added by Scott



Photo added by Scott



Don, King of the Mountain... - added by Scott



Sunny, warm and dry....just perfect. - added by Scott



...and super views... - added by Scott



Interesting rock face... - added by Scott



Near the Raven's nest. - added by Scott



A really memorable hike. Thanks again, Kurt! - added by Scott



Kurt using Don's head as a tripod - added by Shelly



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