Adirondacks July 2011

Last year we hiked Algonquin Peak, Avalanche Pass, and Blueberry Mountain, and were very much looking forward to another Adirondack hike. Here we are.

The forecast was calling for heavy weather, but apart from dramatic clouds on the way through upstate New York, and a heavy cloudburst during the first night, the weather was perfect and there were no bugs to speak of!
We camped at the Alpine Club's Keene Farm Meadow sharing the space with a few families with young kids and an owl hooting in the night.
One of Jackie's co-workers - an avid outdoors man - had recommended several neat things to consider doing this trip.  Taking Patrick's advice, we decided on Giant Mountain as the main hike and following a good breakfast, set off on the Zander Scott Trail up Giant Mountain.  Zander Scott Trail was named by Zander's family to honour his love of the outdoors.

Partway up the Ridge Trail, I stopped to chat with Kevin. He's from Wisconsin, and is spending the summer working for the New York D.E.C. (Department of Environmental Conservation). He and his four legged companion Leopold are camping out off the trail, and spend their days traveling the trails helping and talking to hikers about good hiking practices and natural history. Full of enthusiasm, Kevin's been doing the same thing in National Parks in the Southwest, and is looking forward to a career as a Park Ranger.
A few minutes up the steep trail is a fork, with the right hand route crossing the high water on a large log (out of the picture, and not too much out of the water!)
Someone with a sense of humour used chalk to put a wry grin on the unusual rock.
From this lookout, you can just see the trailhead parking lot on the side of the road.  The white Jeep with a canoe on top is barely visible in the enlargement below.  It's a pretty steep trail.
At the top of Giant Mountain, people celebrate the long haul with a burst of enthusiasm!
Eric, Scott and Adam are back-country hiking and have done a lot of it!  The day before, they hiked in the Dix Wilderness area.   Last winter, they enjoyed snowboarding the Adirondacks.  To come all the way from the Buffalo area means this must be a pretty good spot.  Maybe we'll try an Adirondack winter hike/snowshoe as they suggested.  Thanks for the recommendation guys!
Jackie takes a break at the edge, sitting comfortably on a "sofa" of rock.
After a long hike down Roaring Brook Trail followed by a 2 mile walk along a road, we arrived at the Jeep at 9 p.m.a great hike.  Now it's time for food and sleep! Tomorrow, we're gonna do some canoeing.
First thing next morning, we head through  Lake Placid on the way to the ADK lodge for latest info and a Paddler's map. Along the way, we see an interesting story told in storefront signs.

Take a look at this for a laugh. One business leads to another I guess.

On the far right in the photo on the left, you can see the "Speedway Automotive Collision Centre" and next to it, the "Priceless Car Rental".  For the failed repair jobs, you have the "Rent a Wreck"!
To the left of Rent A Wreck, out of the picture, is "Alpine Auto Body".  Judging from the door signs, I guess the owner said "To Hell With It".
(The door was locked tight)
Near Saranac Lake, we decide to head for Follensby Clear Pond, which is part of the Floodwood Loop.
"Which way to the Water?"
"...Head out on the highway, lookin' for adventure..."
This guy is all set for a day or a week out fishing by the looks of it. Leavin' all his cares behind...
A lengthy Sea Serpent lurks by the canoe.
Actually, it's a submarine telephone cable!
A loon and it's baby inspect the island campers from a distance
A short portage to the next pond awaits our return.
On the way back, we spot a rocky outcrop next to a perfect canoe put-in.
The sun is shining, it's time for lunch and a dip, and then we bask in the sun for a while.
...and once again a Sea Serpent lurks next to the canoe.
This time it's a very old submarine telephone cable hidden in the grass...
Someone canoes here regularly, and restocks the Hummingbird feeder!
So here we are at the end of the day, getting ready to head back to Ottawa.  While approaching the shoreline for lunch and a swim, we were very lucky to catch sight of a local - way up in the trees!

Jackie and I will leave you with this story, and pictures of our feathered friend. Happy Trails!
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