9.19.2008

Remote places and wild things

The track starts where I left the trail (near waypoint 001) and waypoint 0BS is where the photo of the bear scat (below) was taken.

It was kind of ironic that I was roaming around the streets of Manhattan on Sept. 10, 2008, because just four days prior to the trip to New York, I went for a long, lonely bushwhack in Ricker Basin, needless to say, I did not encounter any people. I did catch a quick glimpse of a bull moose but they are skittish at this time of year and the animal charged off through the woods after becoming aware of me. It is quite disconcerting that something so big can disappear so quickly but I was way off trail in a very overgrown area and the moose are much better equipped to move through this environment than I am.

I found a small watercourse that had scoured the topsoil away and followed it up into the bowl on the east side of Ricker Mountain. It was kind of like climbing a slide in the Adirondacks but on a much smaller scale.

The seasons are starting to change, the foliage is turning slightly now...

A rotted stump rises from the understory. It's much easier to move through the forest in the winter on snowshoes. Getting down from the high point of this bushwhack was not particularly easy or entertaining and I was wet and sore when I finally emerged from the woods -- showers had moved in, as promised in the forecast. These images are an interesting contrast to the photos I took when backcountry skiing in this area (and here) in the previous winter.

Bear scat -- and fresh and hot. Black bears are usually shy in Vermont so who knows: Perhaps this well fed ursine was watching me from the shelter of a thicket or deep hollow in the woods? It's been reported that it's been a good season for bears in Vermont (unlike humans): Too bad I can't hibernate through coming the winter.

I'm planning on camping at South Meadows (close to Adirondack Loj) in the High Peaks Saturday night... So I hope to get some photos of the sunset over the mountains and to go for a long hike on Sunday.

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