Friday, March 7, 2014

Sunny Days

The lovely sunshine these last couple of days has allowed me to make two brief excursions.

A week ago, on the way back from skiing in Paul Smiths, I saw a sign on Co. Rte. 26 in Duane Center for a XC ski trail that I'd never noticed before.  Info online called it the Town of Duane Pond and Bog Trail, but didn't give much detail; most notably missing, to my interest, was the length of this trail system.  Nonetheless, I thought I'd go check it out.  When I arrived at the parking area, there was a map posted...but, again, with no mileage.  In fact, it made a big point of saying:

Still undaunted, I headed in.

I hadn't gone too far when I realized I'd already reached the observation deck at the far end of the property, and that the "scale" was rather on the small side.  In fact, after 40 minutes I'd skied every inch of the trail "system"--some sections two and three times already.  But it was a pretty patch of woods with decent conditions that I had all to myself: not a bad thing at all.  Coming back to the car brought me close behind the historic Duane Methodist Church, which was looking particularly scenic in the afternoon sun.

Feeling a little gipped from yesterday, I headed out again this afternoon...but to familiar territory this time.  I went to the trail to Elephant's Head Mountain, which I've mentioned here before.  There's a two-mile, unpaved road from Rt. 30 to the base of the mountain which is great for skiing.  I've already skied it once this season, but that was really late in the day (OK, so it was actually by moonlight when I got out), so I had no pictures to share then.  Today's warm sun was clearly just right for a busy downy woodpecker working trial side, but it was making the snow rather sticky--just the opposite of the very fast/icy conditions a week ago.  Nevertheless, it was great to be out.

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