Saturday, December 8, 2012

Morgan Mountain

When I checked the weather last night, it looked like the morning would bring rain and freezing drizzle throughout the Adirondacks, which was a little disappointing.  I had hoped to make a quick hike into Cooper Kiln Pond, but without snow as a base, freezing drizzle would not make for a good day.

I guess I'm not one to pay a lot of attention or listen to reason.  Waking up, I decided if I could get to the trailhead before the rain was supposed to start, I could figure out the rest.  I got to the trailhead really early, about an hour and a half before sunrise.  Great, right?  Beat the rain, right?  Sure did, there was no sign of rain.  I had all day, there was no sense hiking in the dark, so I climbed into the back of the CR-V and took a nap.  Definitely not the Hilton, but it was comfortable enough for an hour and a half.

All was good when I woke, no freezing drizzle or even any rain.  I headed up the trail, which wasn't too bad, real level and wide.  It ended up it was a snowmobile trail.  That would make a good snowshoe, but was turning into a little bit of tedium.  So at about 1 mile, I decided I needed a change and took a left instead of a right and headed up.

I spent the next two hours following a (mostly) dry stream bed.  The path meandered through a few glens, but was mostly heavily wooded.

All along the way, just down a small ravine to my left was a nice flowing stream.  The sound of it being there was very relaxing and comforting.

While it was a great hike up, there were no scenic vistas for stunning mountain photos.  I did enjoy every moment and all of the views along the way.

No matter how many miles or how many hikes, each all seem to have one thing in common; that one partridge that decides to explode out from under a pine tree.  I won't write the words I spoke.

I spent the entire hike up in a nice snow, following a set of prints that belonged to an animal of the canidae family.  I couldn't be sure exactly what it was other than that, but it wasn't too far in front of me.  The tracks were almost as fresh as mine in the new fallen snow.

One of the very interesting things was actually finding the origin of the stream that had been down the ravine!

Following the stream bed back down, after a pretty steady snow, followed by a nice warm sun, the trail was pretty muddy.  There were no falls, many slips, but no falls.  At one point, when I turned to look behind, I could see the back side of the range that includes Whiteface.

At the end of it all, it was a great hike and a great day in the woods.  I did put Cooper Kiln back on the list, probably for more of a snowshoe day or maybe even a summer day, who knows.  As far as I can tell, it will be there for me when the time is right.