Saturday, June 9, 2018

ORFS Hike Dexter Inn and Pine Ridge Road Trails - Sunapee, NH

Members of Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) had their Tuesday 10 am hike and lunch led by Al and Eileen.
  • Al described options for hiking paths: dirt road, paved road, and forest.
  • The hike included the trails of Dexter's Inn
  • Our trail visited Crowther Chapel
  • Eileen shared her bear encounter experience.
  • Nancy demonstrated her protection from black flies.
  • Al entertained the group with his rendition of rhyme schemes





Directions:  from Rte 11 Sunapee, take 103B 1/2 mi, Rt on Stagecoach Rd 1.0 mi, Rt on Young Hill Rd 1/2 mi,  L on Pine Ridge Road – go around loop counter clockwise ¼ mi where you see the view.   


References
++++++++++++++++++

" Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

    Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

    Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

    Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy
    at Amazon.com  

    Sunday, May 27, 2018

    Sky Dive Georgia


    My grandson  Carson, his father Shaun, and his Uncle Tim, celebrated Carson's 2018 graduation from Harrison High School, Kennesaw, Georgia with a tandem sky jump.


    They jumped from 14,600 feet.  The total jump took approximately 4 1/2 minutes. The free fall was one minute, followed by a 3 1/2 minute parachute flight to a safe landing.

    Carson will be attending the University of Mississippi this Fall. 

    Carson's sister, Madison, did the skydive in 2016.  She is a senior at Auburn University.


    Carson Skydiving 2018



    Shaun Skydiving 2018



    Timothy Skydiving 2018



    Maddi Skydiving 2016



    Video by a Proud Grandfather and Father
    Preparation, Pre and Post Interviews


    Never say, " I wish I had been skydiving"

    Sky Dive The Farm

    ++++++++++++++++++

    " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

      Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

      Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

      Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com 
       

      Wednesday, May 23, 2018

      How close is “too close” when viewing a bear?


      I have lived in New Hampshire for many years and have had glimpses of black bears as they crossed my hiking paths or roads. These brief sightings were so quick I was never able to get a picture.

      I also heard “Do not get too close to a bear – particularly when cubs are present”. With this caution, last Monday I was in my front yard in Bedford, and lo and behold a mother bear with four cubs following, crossed the road … a 100 or so feet in front of me.

      With iPhone in hand, I stealthily walked up the road to see if I could spot where the bears entered the leafy green and dark woods.  I turned onto my neighbor’s lawn outside the forest.

      No sooner did I make the turn, when over the knoll ahead was a large growling upright bear facing me with paws up ready to box.  The mother was protecting her cubs and warning me to “stay away”. With camera rolling, I was able to get a glimpse of her standing.  Then returning to all fours, she lumbered into a dark hole in the forest where she had already cleared her cubs to safety.

      This was my first challenge by a bear – and a warning, “do not get too close”.

      My wife joined me for a view and we watched the bear from the top of the mound ... maybe fifty feet from the dark forest hole where the bear was camouflaged in the woods. We could only see her eyes, nose, and slight body movement. The mother was in front of a tree urging her cubs to climb the tree.

      As we silently watched waiting for a better picture, she unexpectedly roared while rushing a few feet out of the woods  ...  and immediately returned to her black forested cave.  She was again challenging us to keep away from her cubs ... and to leave.

      This was a more vicious second warning "to leave".

      This is when I realized, “too close to a bear”, means being within sight of the bear.

      We retreated to the road, and walked to the other side of the woods. We could see one of the cubs clinging high in a tree.  We knew the mother was still below the treed cubs, and we nervously kept an eye on the ground level, anticipating a charging bear from the woods.

      It was time to leave before my foolish bravery resulted in personal danger.

      My lesson and warning to all my readers is, if you want to observe a wilderness bear, stay out of its sight ... as far away as you can.  Use your zoom camera lens, and if you do not have a zoom lens, then leave.

      Remember, getting close to a bear, means staying out of sight of the bear.



      ++++++++++++++++++

      " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

        Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

        Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

        Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

        Tuesday, May 15, 2018

        Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) Hike at Mink Brook Nature Preserve, Hanover, New Hampshire


        Let's go hiking with the ORFS!  Today's outdoor trek will be in Hanover, NH at the Mink Brook Nature Preserve. Weather is sunny and in the low 70's ...AND the black flies are still sleeping!

        The Mink Brook Nature Preserve protects habitat for wild brook trout, bears, and many other creatures while offering a natural retreat within walking distance of downtown Hanover. Owned by the Hanover Conservancy, this 112-acre preserve is the result of deep generosity and community spirit. Through the millennia, Mosbasak Sibosis (“Mink Brook” in Abenaki) has been an important center of life for Native Americans and remains so today. (Mink Brook Nature Preserve Map and Guide)






        The above map’s red arrows begin and end at the Parking (P) area and proceeds through the wooden gate onto Quinn Trail along Mink Brook; continues on the Forest Loop; crosses the Bridge to Trout Brook Trail; and returns back to the Bridge and exits at the wood gate on Quinn Trail.  Our trek took about 1 ½ hours.





        Who are the ORFS?
        The Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) group meets every Tuesday year-round at 10 am.  In the summer we kayak/canoe, swim and hike.  In the fall we hike, and in the winter we snowshoe and cross-country ski.  Our trips are from 1-1/2 to 2 hours, followed by lunch.

        Directions and location are available for our Tuesday 10 am outings via email and the monthly New London Chapin Senior Center Courier newsletter. To learn more and join, contact the Chapin Senior Center at 357 pleasant Street, PO Box 1263, New London, New Hampshire 03752 or go to their web site at http://www.coachapincenter.org

        ORFS is a very informal group and participation is for all outdoor enthusiasts wanting guaranteed good exercise with a friendly fun group.

        References

        More Blog Posts on Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS)
        1. ORFS Winter Hike Puts Safety First: Kidder-Cleveland-Clough Trail


        ++++++++++++++++++

        " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

          Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

          Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

          Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

          Wednesday, April 25, 2018

          Perkins Pond Declares April 24 as 2018 Ice-Out




          ++++++++++++++++++

          " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

            Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

            Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

            Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

            Sunday, April 15, 2018

            Bowling Day for Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS)






            Join ORFS
            The Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) group meets every Tuesday year-round at 10 am.  In the summer we kayak/canoe, swim and hike.  In the fall we hike, and in the winter we snowshoe, cross-country ski and bowl.  Our trips are from 1-1/2 to 2 hours, followed by lunch.

            Directions and location are available for our Tuesday 10 am outings via email and the monthly New London Chapin Senior Center Courier newsletter. To learn more and join, contact the Chapin Senior Center at 357 pleasant Street, PO Box 1263, New London, New Hampshire 03752 or go to their web site at http://www.coachapincenter.org


            ORFS is a very informal group and participation is for all outdoor enthusiasts wanting guaranteed good exercise with a friendly fun group.
            ++++++++++++++++++

            " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

              Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

              Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

              Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

              Saturday, April 14, 2018

              SRK Greenway Trail 7 NH Route 4A to Wilmot Center



              The Sunapee, Ragged, and Kearsarge (SRK) Greenway is a 75-mile loop of hiking trails in central New Hampshire. The Greenway Trail System circles the Lake Sunapee area and connects Sunapee, Ragged, and Kearsarge Mountains. 

              Our quest today is shown below: Section 7 topographical map of the SRKG with a descriptive title of Trail 7 NH Route 4A to Wilmot Center.  This 4.4-mile section involves two trails: the Bog Mountain Trail and Kimpton Brook Trail. This was our first time on section 7, specifically Bog Mountain, for Patty, Jim and myself.



              This Greenway map shows our trip in green. The Greenway estimated time to hike is 3 hours.  On our easterly ascent, we stopped frequently for water breaks, and once for a snack, and took 20 to 30 minutes at the summit.  On our hike down to the western trailhead terminus we stopped a few times for water, and then once for snack.  Our total time for Section 7 was just under four hours.

              This section of the SRKG is a mixture of well developed wooded trails and woods-logging roads. Our goal was to summit Bog Mountain, 1,787 feet, starting at the eastern trailhead parking lot at the Wilmot Town Hall.  We would be doing all of section 7.  For those hikers wanting a shorter hike to the summit, we did cross two major dirt roads, Stearns Road, and Pocket Road cross woods, that could be used to more readily access the summit.


              We picked up the bog mountain trail within a minute of walking from the parking lot.  This eastern side of the mountain was very rocky, and reminded me of the saying, “Don’t take NH for Granite”.  The trail up to the summit followed a vein of granite appearing to be centuries ago, reminding me of previous hikes to the White Mountains of NH with plenty of granite rocks. 


              For most of the eastern trail up to the summit the trapezoid signs readily kept us on the trail.  The views from the barren summit of Bog Mountain was marvelous.  We easily recognized Mt Sunapee and Kearsarge Mountain and their surrounding mountains. Certainly, well worth our trek. 


              The hike from the summit downward to our western trail terminus was easier than the eastern side.  However, the trail signs from the summit to the western terminus were not always readily visible.  It appears like the signage was made for hikers entering on the western trailhead, as we frequently had to pause to locate the trapezoid signs, and often spotted them only when we looked behind us from whence we came.

              We exited the Bog Mountain Trail and crossed Stearns Road onto Kimpton Brook Trail.  The Kimpton Brook Trail had large tree blowdowns from winter storms that blocked the trail.  Mixed into this, which made the Kimpton Brook Trail hike exciting, was crossing at least 4 streams by leaping rock to rock, using a blowdown tree, or a hewed log maybe 10 inches in diameter. 


              We now, never have to say, “I wish I had hiked the SRG greenway section over Bog Mountain.”

              References


              ++++++++++++++++++

              " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"

                Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

                Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

                Steve’s books are also available as e-Books at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

                Tuesday, April 10, 2018

                February and April Snowboarding and Downhill Skiing in New Hampshire



                April 2018: Two Days at Mount Sunapee and One Day at Okemo Mountain


                For a bonus video check out Carson, Nicholas, and Tim skiing Mt. Sunapee in February





                ++++++++++++++++++

                " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"


                  Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

                  Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

                  Steve’s books are available as an e-Book at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  

                  Friday, April 6, 2018

                  SRK Greenway Trail 4 Protectworth Trail, Springfield, NH


                  Prologue

                  Learning, opportunities, and fun can often come in threes.  First was when my wife and I joined the Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) group and its emphasis on weekly year-round hiking and paddling in the Lake Sunapee-Dartmouth region. Through ORFS hikes, I recognized my second opportunity, discussed in my January 2018 Blog post titled, New London, NH Conservation Commission web site .  The Conservation Commission web sited listed 29 trail hikes in the New London area.  This ORFS connection further led to my third opportunity, learning more about, the Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway Coalition  (SRKG) and the 14 trails listed in its guide.   And yes, there is an overlap of trails between these two organizations.  Wow!  Maybe I should create a list of those hikes I have done, and those I need to do?

                  Enough said, let me start with my latest hike and blog post, and that is the 4.3-mile Protectworth Trail in Springfield, NH.  Go to the SKRG site and see Trail Map 4 for a topographical map of the Trail. 

                  The ORFS group introduced me to the Protectworth Trail as one of their Tuesday winter hikes.  On that day the ORFS hiked one mile of it (actually 2 miles as we snowshoed in one mile, and then backtracked to our starting trailhead).  See my Blog post of April 2,2018 for more on this ORFS trip. 

                  I was thrilled with this trail because of the snow, blue sky, crisp teen temperatures, no wind, snow-covered tree canopy, and my ORFS friends.  So much so that a few days after the hike, I asked my son Tim and friend Mike to join me in hiking the 4.3-mile Protectworth Trail from its start on Route 114 in Springfield, NH, and finishing at its western trailhead on Baptist Pond at the intersection of Stoneybrook Road (also known as Baptist Pond Road) and Deer Road.

                  The Springfield section of the SKRG is named the Protectworth Trail in honor of the original name given to the land by the Portsmouth proprietors in 1778.  This section of the SKRG is a combination of gravel and wood roads.  It has a few short steep hills on the class VI roads.

                  We took two cars – Tim drove to the Deer Road-Stoneybrook Trailhead and parked in an area off Deer Road.  Mike and I met Tim there, and we drove in my Jeep to the eastern trailhead on Route 114 to start our trek.

                  Do we wear snowshoes, microspikes or just our winter hiking boots?

                  For the ORFS hike, due to deep snow on the trail, we all wore snowshoes and gaiters.  They were a necessity because we did some bushwhacking on ungroomed side trails off this class VI trail.

                  When Tim, Mike and I arrived at the Route 114 trailhead we first checked the trail, and the snow was now packed plus had ice spots.  We elected to wear our microspikes.

                  Scouting the Trail

                  A few days before the hike, my wife and I scouted the Deer Road/Stoney Road western terminus of the Protectworth Trail by driving to where it ended on Stoney Brook Road, locating the Protectworth trail sign, and driving a ways down the dirt Deer Road.

                  This would be my first time doing the entire Protectworth Trail, so for safety reasons (do not get lost!) I brought my compass along with the SRKG topo map.


                  SooNipi Magazine Fall 2015 by Ron Garceau

                  Ron Garceau, a friend and the editor of SooNipi Magazine, had written a very nice article in the Fall 2015 issue. The person who had planned the ORFS hike of Protectworth Trail had shared with me the below two pages from the SooNipi article.  I do believe if you enlarge the images, you can clearly read these two pages.  I share these pages with permission from Ron Garceau.  Indeed, Ron’s hike was in the fall, whereas our hike was in the winter …covering the same delightful Protectworth Trail.


                  References


                  1.      New London, NH Conservation Commission web site http://outdooradventurers.blogspot.com/2018/01/a-friend-just-shared-below-new-london.html
                  2.      Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway Coalition http://www.srkg.com/alltrailsguide.htm
                  3.      Chapin Center Council on Aging http://coachapincenter.org/index.htmlhttp://coachapincenter.org/index.html


                  ++++++++++++++++++

                  " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"


                    Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

                    Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

                    Steve’s books are available as an e-Book at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com  


                    Monday, April 2, 2018

                    An Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) Celebration of Spring


                    This Tuesday’s 10 am trek for the Outdoor Recreation for Seniors (ORFS) was very special. It began with a choice of doing a 3-mile hike around Lake Kolelemook in Springfield, NH, or doing a snowshoe trek on the Protectworth Trail, part of the Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway (SRKG).

                    More so, after the hike, the annual celebration of the March Equinox would begin at our hosts, the Coombs.   Kathy and Bill invite the ORFS to adorn themselves with provided flowers and greenery and partake in Kathy's Spring Offerings.  We dance to our own music and participate in a "New Beginnings" ceremony.

                    Sunapee-Ragged-Kearsarge Greenway (SRKG) is a great circle of trail corridors and conserved lands providing hikers with minimally-developed access to the mountains, lakes, vistas and historical sites of the region. The “necklace” trail comprises over 75 trail miles, created with the cooperation of landowners and local authorities, through the forests, over mountains and, where appropriate, via old roads, now unsuitable for wheeled traffic but more extensively used as much as two centuries ago. 

                    The Sunapee Ragged Kearsarge Greenway Trail Guide topological Map 4 below shows the Protectworth Trail in Springfield, NH. We trekked on the trail about one and a half hours. This trail is Class VI.  It had been previously groomed for snow mobiles, cross country skiers, and hikers.  Besides staying on the main trail, we also added some bushwhacking (making our own side trails in deep snow).

                    We did not hike the full Protectworth Trail (4.3 miles) today, but after 45 minutes on the trail, we turned around and returned to the route 114 trail-head from whence we started.  I got enough sense of this beautiful trail, to plan a return to complete the full Protectworth Trail within the SRKG.

                    Given I chose the Protectworth Trail to snowshoe, the video below gives you a sense of our trek, and then continues to the “party peoples” celebration of spring and new beginnings … and Bill’s sharing of his UFO experiences.




                    References
                    ++++++++++++++++++

                    " Everyone must do something.  I believe I will go outdoors with family and friends"


                      Steve's 5th book, Outdoor Play Fun 4 4 Seasons Volume II, is now available   

                      Outdoor Play Volume II has trip preparations, routes, and narratives of bucket list places to go. The book motivates friends and family to make the outdoors a key component of their daily life. 

                      Steve’s books are available as an e-Book at Kindle and hard copy at Amazon.com