by Bill Schneider & Russ Schneider (Falcon Guides)
© Bill Schneider & Russ Schneider/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.
Nice hike in the Fall woods with a beautiful brook, burbling along much of the first half.
This place is the ultimate playground for anyone who loves scrambling, route-finding and incredible scenery. Leaving the fields on the drive in you'll find a preview of what's in store on the hike, and it only gets more incredible when you hit the trail that runs through this roadless area. The first 1.5 or so miles of this trail were very gentle, with great rewards. In addition to the rock formations, which are smaller here but nonetheless impressive, the giant old-growth forest, the tumbling waters of the creek and the tantalizing views of distant spires guarantee that no matter where your gaze lands, you'll find something fascinating. I just can't say enough about this wonderful area. At one point the trail enters a field and a great view opens up, and across the creek there is an old homesite visible. After this, there are a few places where an obvious trail split has been marked. In both cases, try to go to one side an the way out and the other side on the way back. Where the trail goes uphill and a faint trail turns left, keep going uphill or you'll hit private property. From here on, leaving the trail to any direction will get you to some incredible places. This is really a place that begs to be explored, and something about it manages to seem so wild that it is an incredible experience. The trail becomes steeper after this point, especially once you have scrambled to the top of several rock piles! Somewhere around 4 miles into the trail there will be a clearing that really shows off one enormous spire, and just past that is a neat homesite next to a spring and a GIANT tree. There is no limit to what you can do here with navigation tools. And though the trail is one of the best I've been on, it's the off-trail stuff that makes this so special. As if there aren't enough reasons to visit this area, the trail gets remarkably little use and it's easy to hike all day without seeing another soul.
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