Monday, April 18, 2016

Shagg Crag - the first hike of Spring

One of my projects for 2016 is a weather blanket.  I started crocheting on New Years Day and stitch a row every day based on the temperature.  Every 10 degree increment has a different shade.  Anything over 60 degrees, takes me out of the blues of winter and into shades of green.  On Sunday, my stitches took on the second shade of green.  Under sunny skies Charlie and I decided it was time to try out our hiking legs on a relatively easy nearby mountain. 

This mountain is a real favorite of ours, not only is there a beautiful view from the top but 1 mile to the summit and 560 foot elevation gain makes it easy to tackle when there isn't much time or when the hiking muscles have disappeared after a winter binge-watching British mysteries on Netflix. 

The official name of the mountain is Bald Mountain but there are dozens of mountains named Bald in Maine.  This one is Bald Mountain in Woodstock but the local name, Shagg Crag, comes from the vertical cliffs that rise above the north side of Shagg Pond. 

When my kids were teenagers and were climbing every rock they could find, they spent lots of time
with ropes and carabiners on the cliffs.  Our trail, though, follows along the gentle slope on the side of the mountain and passes Little Concord Pond which we found with ice still around the shore and with a lone loon in the center.

Falcons nest in the cliffs and I have been buzzed by an angry one at least once while hiking in the Spring.  In the Summer, the hike leads to a bonanza of wild blueberries and the first time that we discovered this, we emptied our water bottles and filled them with blueberries. 

In the last few years, a windfarm was built on the next ridge but on this still day, not much electricity was being generated. 

We lingered on the top--Charlie took pictures and I sketched.  Mara mostly scared us to death by
getting too close to the cliffs.

On the way down we stopped at the pond and
Mara swam while the loon dove for fish and put on a show.  It's hard not to feel gratitude for every breath and every moment at times like this.

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Since we last met

The last post was in June of 2013 but really I have not tended to this space since 2009--life got busy and Facebook made quick updates on my friends' lives quicker and easier.  As wonderful as Facebook is for staying in touch, though, it does not provide the challenge and the opportunity to develop ideas and turn them into words.

So, here I go with words again.

There have been lots of changes in my world since last I blogged.  The one that will be most evident here is that I now live on 120 acres in Sumner, Maine.  My mom and dad were at the age where we needed to think about them living with me or me living with them and since I lived on .4 acre in a small town and they lived on 120 acres in a smaller town, it was a no-brainer. My husband and I had an apartment built in their home so that we have our own space but are still right there with them.

My mother is a flower gardener and the yard is full of beautiful cultivated flowers from May to September.  I am a lover of the wild and natural, so the woods are my playground.  We have about 5 miles of trails throughout the property which is bordered by a river and full of erratic boulders, many different species of trees, moss, lichen, wildflowers, ferns and wildlife.  Most weekends I park my car on Friday night and never leave our little piece of heaven.

Thanks for sharing words, thoughts and lives with me and for listening to mine.