The Crooked Canes Journal


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A Hike to Pole Hill Pond & Walnut Ridge ~ Apr 28, 2016

Journal entry by Ray Bouchard



Thursday turned out to be a picture perfect day for a hike that was new for most of the Caners.   The combination of sunny skies, and a nearly constant initial uphill climb had most of us stripped down to our shirtsleeves in no time at all.   13 of us left the parking area (~415’) around 10:00 as we began our clockwise trek towards our first goal, lunch on the shore of Pole Hill Pond (~1120’).   It took us a little under 2 hours to make the 2.5 mi. journey to what I can only describe as one of the most delightful lunch spots in the Adirondacks.   Most of us chose to bask in the sunshine along the shore, while others preferred the cool shade.   After a leisurely, almost bug free lunch, we parted company with Nancy K. who had to return early to feed her baby rescue squirrels.   As she doubled back, we continued on the Blue Trail, and the climb that would eventually bring us to Walnut Ridge (~1580’) where we were treated to a great view of Northwest Bay and beyond.   The only problem was we had to share the top with the Black Flies.    Some resorted to head nets as their defense, while the rest of us applied bug dope to all exposed skin, or else swatted them.   We only lingered long enough for a quick peek, and a hearty wave to Don and his crew who were hiking the shoreline trail along the Bay.   As you might have guessed, with the Black Flies hot on our heels, we didn’t waste much time scurrying over the last two hills as we made our way back to the cars.    According to a sign, the last, and higher of the two hills, has been given the name of “Middle Mountain.” (1400’).   If the truth be told, the Black Flies were only a minor annoyance, and we expect to share the woods with them at this time of year.   I think it’s fair to say that we managed to have an enjoyable experience in spite of them.

I’d like to thank, first timer, Claudia Rosenholz for joining us.   Other members on the hike included Ray Boucher, Kurt & Diane, Fran, Joy, Claire, Ed, Karen Burka, Nancy, Margie and Shelly.

Ray Bouchard

5/3/16 - Diane Wisell added 2 photos. 5/3/16 - RayB Bouchard added 22 photos.

5/4/16 - Ed Valla added 2 photos.

27 photos



Front Row: Ray Boucher, Fran, Margie, Nancy, Joy & Claudia Back Row: Diane, Ed, Shelly, Kurt, Karen Burka & Claire Photo by Ray



One of lots of little water falls along the way. - added by Diane



Cliff on the north shore of Pole Pond? Or the north shore of Kauai? Or maybe just a mossy stump. - added by Diane



It's hard to miss the turn when you have an arrow and a rock cairn to guide you. - added by RayB



Red Trilliums alongside the trail. - added by RayB



Yup! you guessed right. The trail used to go straight. Fortunately for us a re-route was available just in case we left our waders home. - added by RayB



This mess was off to one side of the flooded section of trail. One of the tires had a small tree growing in the middle of it so they were probably left behind by loggers several years ago. - added by RayB



Our first view of Pole Hill Pond. - added by RayB



It was a lovely introduction, and this was only the beginning. - added by RayB



Enjoying lunch on the rocks. - added by RayB



Or in the shade. - added by RayB



Or somewhere in between. - added by RayB



A patch of Wintergreen shared the lunch spot with me. - added by RayB



This small pine seedling shared the lunch spot with us too. I suspect it has a very uncertain future ahead of it. - added by RayB



Speaking of pine trees, I've never seen one before that had bark in the form of multi-colored platelets. I'm guessing, Red Pine, but perhaps one of our readers could give me a more definitive answer. - Thank you Peter F. For the definitive answer. It is indeed Red Pine. His link confirmed it. http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photo-red-pine-bark-texture-pinus-resinosa-has-interesting-colors-image50762305 added by RayB



One last view of Pole Hill Pond before we set out for Walnut Ridge. - added by RayB



If you happen to encounter this sign when you hike in this area, be aware that the trail to Padanarnum Road is closed because it goes across private property. - added by RayB



A lush scene along the way. - added by RayB



A view of Northwest Bay from Walnut Ridge. - added by RayB



At one point we stopped on Walnut Ridge to arm ourselves against the Black Flies. One look at Ray Boucher, and I knew something had tickled his fancy. - added by RayB



A quick glance to the right provided part of the answer. - added by RayB



Then of course there was the person screaming, "Damn, I know you're in there somewhere. I'm going to squash you as soon as I get my finger out of my eye." - added by RayB



Finally it was time for the ladies to model their headgear, much to the delight of all. - added by RayB



Thank you Fran for pointing out the Checkered Rattlesnake Plantain orchid to me. It won't bloom for at least 4 or 5 more months, but it'll be worth the wait. - added by RayB



Even my eyes were able to spot this beautiful Mourning Cloak butterfly basking in the sunshine a little further down the trail. - added by RayB



Photo added by Ed



Photo added by Ed



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