19 thoughts on “Dawn On Billy Goat Trail”

  1. I did not know that about Dickens. I love walking along Lake Michigan from Navy Pier to Belmont Harbor. But, not on busy weekends. Bicyclists think they own that venue.

  2. I did my 10 mile walk along the Sheridan Road trail in Winnetka/Kenilworth/Wilmette this morning. We’re almost akin to Charles Dickens and his 20 mi/daily walks.

  3. Mespo: What does one do? I don’t know about anyone else, but there are several approaches I take. One is fast and light, just a good invigorating walk, typically on a trail I’m familiar with. I wear a backpack carrying binoculars, a bird guide, a plant field guide, a dichotomous key for plants, a hand lens, and some weights varying between 15 to 30 pounds, depending on if I’m training for Red Card certification for wildland firefighting. In order to qualify, you need to carry 45 pounds one mile in 45 minutes – that’s not something you want to try all of sudden.

    At other times, when I’m hiking a new trail, I’m observing the ecological details of the area, trying to pick out where one ecotype grades into the next, which gives me clues about the hydrology; when the last disturbance event took place; and for interesting plant species that might be in bloom. I study up on the vegetation of an area I’m not familiar with beforehand. Mostly, I like seeing how plants associate themselves according to the microclimate and hydrology, and what might be feeding on them. Always a good time.

  4. Thanks Nick.

    One other thing about the NY Harriman State Park area and some trails with hills that have a 360 view.
    They’re very close to West Point’s summer training area. So you can hear it, feel it, and see it. Definitely no tip toe through the tulips over there. Be prepared to bump into cadets.

  5. Very nice JT. My hike today was Little Red School House to Maple Lake. Not quite as picturesque as yours, but very nice also. Herons and chipmunks!

  6. Rob, Folks will probably chime in w/ all types of suggestions. I bet I have tried them all. NOTHING comes close to DEET. Use it sparingly and wash yourself and clothing when done. It won’t kill you!

    The Appalachian Trail was a dream of mine. But alas, that time has passed. From my reading, the stretch you mention is one of the nicest.

  7. Did some hiking in NY too. I picked up the Appalachian Trail in Harriman State Park.
    Looped it on a high ridge. The bugs are out in force: Mosquitoes, Black Flies, No-See-Um Flies (Scientific name: Culicoides) and Deer Ticks.
    Saw some rattle snakes on the trail. Stepped on a rock that made a Shssssss sound. Turned out to be a full grown Wood Turtle.

    What’s the best bug repellent with & without DEET?

  8. Saw a deer just below me mucking around in the woods from my view on a two story deck in the Georgia mtns. and from my backyard, as I emerged from a tangle of blackberry bushes, a sly red fox slid along behind a wire mesh fence with a sort of evil glint in his/her eye. First/only time for both sightings.

  9. What a lovely, invigorating way to start the day. Puts things in perspective.

  10. I have to confess, I’m not a hiker. Never have been especially at 5:30 a.m.. Born in the country, the only thing in my youth that could get me up that early was work, hunting or driving a classmate to high school — and she had to be smokin’ hot.

    What does one do on a hike?

  11. Seeing a fox is a rare treat. I have never seen on a hike. However, I was doing a surveillance once in a very rural area. I was sitting in my car early in the morning and a fox crossed the road about feet in front of me. It got halfway across the road and then took note of me w/ a “Damn, how did I miss that” look on his face. I used to be an early morning hiker, age changed that.

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