Saturday, October 24, 2009

Windy Woods

The plan for yesterday, despite the weather, was to take Marge out to the woods again.  My parents had someone coming over for some banking business, so I felt the best thing to do was to get out of the house.

I stopped by my grandmother's first, where Louie (and the yummy pizza he brought) met up with us.  I then drove my grandmother to the store.  Marge remained in the car with Louie and I, but I clicked and treated her as people mozied about in the parking lot.  She actually did pretty well.

Off to the woods, then...

Despite the overcast sky, the color was amazing! As soon as we set foot on the trail, vibrant shades of yellow hit us in the face.  It is so fascinating to go to this place and watch it change through the seasons.  Just a couple of months ago, the foliage was a dark green, and various species of mushroom were growing along the trail's edge.  Now, the trees are much brighter and the floor is covered by yet a new layer of shed leaves.

Just like last time we hiked the Blue Trail, Pump House Pond loomed before us.  The water danced from bank to bank as the strong wind pushed it.  The color today was even more spectacular than it was last time, though the cloudy sky above it did darken the scene a bit.

Onward we marched.  These three very dark-colored trees stood in an otherwise light-colored patch of the woods.  I've often thought about how it might be interesting to begin to familiarize myself with the names of the different species growing here, but, for now, I'll just appreciate their beauty.

We continued, Marge leading the way, as usual.  As we ascended Todt Hill, which the Blue Trail traverses, the wind began to pick up even more.  (By the way, in my last post from this hike, I mentioned that Todt Hill is the highest points on the eastern seaboard.  Turns out I was wrong - it is the highest point on the seaboard south of Maine. Don't know who thought that title up, but I suppose it's still pretty high!)

By about this point, the sounds of the maintenance on the adjacent golf course started to catch Marge's attention.  She didn't get completely freaked out, but they did startle her.  I wonder if I can attribute her somewhat dampened fear response to the 50 mg of L-Theanine she has been getting, but more on that next week.  Of course, it is also entirely possible that the prospect of continuing to explore the woods was, for Marge, simply worth listening to the noise.

We walked on a little bit more, but then we, the humans, started to get scared ourselves!  The wind had really picked up, and thin-trunked trees were swaying back and forth way too much for our liking.  We may have even heard a couple fall down in the distance. Between the trees, the wind, and the manmade noise, we decided it was in our best interest to head back and get to our goal point - Priory Pond - another time.  

Just like last time, we made a second stop at the pond. We wandered slightly off-trail to explore the banks. Here, Marge looks out across the water. She was propped up on a recently downed tree.

And, in identical fashion, she took to the water yet again, despite the fact that the temperature was only about 60 degrees outside. She made sure not to go any farther than chest deep.

Here, she stands amid the collection of colorful leaves that have made their way into the pond...

...And then poses yet again for me once she's on dry land.

The final stop on our trip was to another bank of Lake Ohrbach.  The first trip we took to High Rock Park, we wandered all the way up to the other side.  Due to my newfound full-adherence to the major trails, I chickened out of going too far up.  As if you could get lost at a lake - in the city, no less!

And so concludes yet another excursion.  I'm so lucky to be able to go to a place as nice as this.


Martha October 24, 2009 at 11:47 AM  

That looks amazing - your pictures were quite beautiful in particular the Pump House pond (?).
We are glad you didn't get lost and that Marge led the way.

Dexter October 24, 2009 at 1:21 PM  

Marge is not bothered by the cool water. She is a hearty labragal! You go girl.


NAK and The Residents of The Khottage Now With KhattleDog! October 24, 2009 at 1:51 PM  

Inkhredible shots!

I was pulling along the trail with all of woo!


Kathy Mocharnuk October 24, 2009 at 1:55 PM  

I want to go on one of your walks, they look like so much fun and the woods with the changing trees are amazing! Marge...look at her go in that cold water!

Queen B October 24, 2009 at 5:10 PM  

WOW! The woods look sooooo beautiful in the pictures. Lucky Marge! My pack will surely love to go for a walk with you and Marge if they see where you take her for walks! =)

KB October 24, 2009 at 6:51 PM  

It sounds like all of you had a great time. It's great that Marge did so well with the odd sounds. The wind can be either invigorating or freaky. The sound of falling trees usually sends me fleeing too!

I love the second to last photo of Marge looking at you. She's a beautiful dog.

The Army of Four October 24, 2009 at 8:23 PM  

What a cool adventure! I wish I'd been there!
Play bows,

RILEY AND STAR MY MALTESEKIDS October 25, 2009 at 12:50 AM  

This was the nicest post.. My favorite picture was the one of Marge in the pond surrounded by leaves.

My mom was from Up State New York and your pictures of Orhback Lake reminded me of that area.

Very nice, thank you.

Frankie Furter and Ernie October 25, 2009 at 9:08 AM  

Such a nice walkie for you. I don't like wind much either. You look so happy in that pond. Did you see any rotten rodents on you walk?

BRUTUS October 25, 2009 at 10:17 AM  

Beautiful pictures! Funny about the highest point thing - I think people dream up some pretty bizarre things just to give something a title!

Gus, Louie and Callie October 25, 2009 at 5:23 PM  

What beautiful pictures. Sure wish we could go with you.. Now the water that is where we would be..

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

Cyndi and Stumpy October 25, 2009 at 5:42 PM  

Such great scenery and marge is very photogenic, too! She looks so pleased with herself. it's hard to picture her as a fearful and insecure dog. You are doing such great things with her!

Carolyn October 27, 2009 at 9:08 PM  

What great pictures! I love the "root" steps! Very cool.

There are many things I miss about the woods back east. Since we don't get much rain out here, fall is generally shades of gold. It's lovely and unique to itself but I do miss the depth of color from the eastern fall.

Thanks for sharing!


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