Monday, September 15, 2008

Pisgah State Park

These pictures are from Pisgah State Park in New Hampshire. This is where Trevor and I went on Saturday. It was an awesome area. We had to drive down several miles of dirt roads which are mostly meant for atvs and trucks... in Trevor's car.

Beaver Dam Break

This past weekend was a fun one. On Saturday, Trevor and I found some excitement near the Green River. We went there after one of our teachers had suggested it, and told us about some "rock stacks" there. Just a short time after arriving, a cop pulled up and told us to watch out  because the water would be rising and getting muddy due to a beaver dam upstream that broke. He was right because shortly after that, it started to happen. We decided to go check it out, so we drove upstream a little ways and found the cop along with another emergency vehicle near this bridge. The bridge was over a small stream that ran into the river, coming from up the mountain. The water was running extremely hard into the river.
This is a picture of the stream that all the water from the beaver dam was running down. One of the guys that was there said the water level was much higher before we got there. I would guess that this stream, if running normally, would probably just be a few inches deep.

So the cop and the other guy left after we were there for a while, and Trevor and I decided we wanted to see the actual dam. So we asked a guy who was working on his car along the road how to get there. On our way up, we realized how much water must have came down the mountain. The road followed the stream at certain spots, and we could see where water rushed over the road in several different places, ran through a llama pasture, and through several fields. 

This is a picture of a field that had been completely washed over(as you can see by the flat grass). Much of the field was pumpkins and gourds, and there were also other areas that had other vegetables. One old woman that we talked to later said how bad she felt for the farmer and how he works so hard on it. We got to the road where the man said to go. It was closed because the water had damaged a bridge, and later they brought in some equipment and started to tear down the bridge to rebuild. As of now, Trevor and I were 2 of only like 5 people on the scene. It was pretty neat. 

This is where the beaver pond had been. It was a very large area behind an old house, on someone's property. You can see the dead trees from where some of the standing water had been. I would say that the area that had been underwater was at least 5 acres in size from what we could see.

Here is the cop and the other guy that were also there. You can see, from the water line, how deep the water must have been. That was a ton of water that ran out of that pond. While we were there, I saw one beaver but didn't get a picture.

In the front right of the picture, you can see where the dam must have broke, and all the water rushed out. Further back, you can see one of the beaver lodges. 

After we left the pond, we stopped and talked to some older women that were near the bridge. They and another man both said that the dam had been there for over a decade. I was surprised that it would randomly break one day after being there for so long. We had quite a bit of rain recently, so that could have been the cause, but they also seemed to think that it may have been done by someone on purpose. The cop must have thought the same thing, because when we went back to the car, he was there and ran our ids and questioned us. I guess it would be kind of sketchy us just happening to be there. But they saw that we weren't involved and then talked to us for a little while about local sights and wildlife.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Erving and Wendell State Forests

Last weekend I went to a couple of nearby state parks. Saturday I checked out Erving State Forest, and the Sunday I went to Wendell State Forest. They both had pretty decent hiking trails. The official season for the parks is over, so there wasn't much activity at either place; but Erving looks like it would be a neat place to camp when the season starts back up next year. Both places have lake type areas with pretty nice beaches, especially Erving.

These two pictures are at the top of the mountain at Erving. I hiked up there, and it is neat because the top turns into this rock. It had a nice view of the distant trees/mountains. I bet in a few more weeks it will be even prettier.

The next few pictures are from Wendell.

A campfire area near the lake. If this was around home in Ohio, I would definately have a ton of campfires here. 

A view from the beach area of the lake.

After hiking for a little while you come to this area on the other side of the lake, which is kind of like a swamp. It looked really cool. Wish there was a moose standing in it!

Along the back of the swampy area I noticed this newt on the trail. I saw about 3 more of these and a baby water snake. I wasn't really expecting to see anything like this.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Hike Up Greylock

I have been here at Hallmark for about a week now. Trevor and I had a couple days to explore the area, and see some neat things. One of the things we did was to hike up to the top of the highest point in Mass. (Mt Greylock). It was a 4 mile hike, which we did not really realize when we started, and took us about 3 1/2 hours.... which includes one or two stops in order to explore a bit.

A little shop along the way. They sold some little knick-knacks, and some tasty looking preserves and such. The old man that ran the store was really nice and knew a lot about cellphones for an older gentleman. 

Trevor standing on a large rock. It was at the bottom of this waterfall type area along the trail, and probably my favorite area along the trail that we hiked. I slipped on one of the rocks and fell flat on my back, luckily sparing my camera, and not getting too wet. 

Trevor on a different rock around the small falls. It is difficult to show how neat the area actually was.

This is what we found when we reached the top. You go inside that tower and then climb to the top to look out. On Trevor's phone it said we were at 3421 ft. I guess I was a little higher though, since I am quite a bit taller than Trevor..... hah.

The ceiling on the bottom level when walking into the tower.

Trevor and the ceiling.

A view from the top with some wildflowers and smaller mountains in the distance.

A couple in the grass. There were actually several people up on the top, including a couple groups that seemed to be college students. The road to the top has been closed for, I think, about two years, but they are hoping to have it opened real soon. The AT also crosses this mountain, so we saw a few people that we assume were hiking that.

Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to post some pictures from Hallmark and around from were we are living.