Throwback Adventure – Forest Lake State Park – New Hampshire

I have decided to return to posting new “Throwback Adventures” after taking time to re-post some of my favorites with Shadow.  This has been a therapeutic process for me to share.  We are devastated that both Shadow and Buster have both passed, but find peace knowing we can continue to remember them through our “Throwback Adventures”.  They were amazing boys and are forever in our hearts.

In October of 2017 Shadow, Wilma, My Mom, and I Adventured to Forest Lake State Park in Dalton, New Hampshire.  Forest Lake State Park is an almost 400 acre Park with a Lake, and sandy beach.  It is popular for swimming, fishing, boating, and picnicking.

We had an energetic Adventure to the Forest Lake State Park on a chilly fall day.  My memories from this Park, include:  Shadow swims, beautiful mountain views, and lots of playtime with Shadow and Wilma.  We spent some time on the beach and enjoyed the scene.  This probably the farthest North I have explored.  So glad we could visit Forest Lake State Park on yet another Adventure in New Hampshire (Throwback ratings will not always be rated).

May 9, 2020 – Gillette Castle State Park – Connecticut

Today Wilma and I Adventured to Gillette Castle State Park in East Haddam, Connecticut. This was our third trip to the Gillette Castle as we have been there on two other occasions with Shadow. Gillette Castle was once the estate of William Gillette, a famous Actor in the early 1900’s. It was later bought by the state of Connecticut. The Park includes a visitor center, museum, hiking trails, and picnic area. There are even live theater events and walking tours available to visitors.

We had an extra-green Adventure to Gillette Castle State Park.  I debated blogging about Gillette Castle as I have blogged about it before, however it has been well over a year, we have many new followers, and it really is an exceptional Park.  I had three Adventures planned today but in realizing how close Gillette Castle State Park was I decided to add it to our day.  Upon arrival I was shocked to find the parking lot almost empty, quite different then our past Adventures, as Gillette Castle State Park is a popular destination.

Today we decided to spend some time hiking, and exploring the trails, something we have done some in the past, but not too extensively.  The Trails were labeled by color, however the online map had no color identification.  I soon realized it was too cumbersome to follow the map so we just walked and walked. There were plenty of landmarks nearby, and the Park is not large so I knew we would not become lost.  I absolutely loved seeing green in every direction, so vibrant!  We trotted high above the Connecticut River, wandered through the woods, and later headed toward the River before heading back to the Castle.  There were picturesque bridges throughout, and many choices for trails.  The wind was strong, but refreshing.  It was really pretty, and the hills ensured great exercise on this trail system.  Quite an energizing experience.

After hiking for some time we went over to view every angle of the Gillette Castle.  Unfortunately there has been continued construction over the years, and this time we were not even able to go on the porch or get too close.  However we rested in the grass, Wilma watched and rolled, and I appreciated the views of the Castle, the River, and the soft texture of the bright green grass.  Such a unique and scenic state park, even on the third time visiting.  So, so glad we could visit again, and I am positive that we will be back in the future.  I will include photographs at the bottom from today and our first two Adventures, glad to share our other visits with our sweet Shadow (Rating:  4).

May 2020

October 2018

August 2017

February 19, 2020 -Holyoke Heritage State Park – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma, and I Adventured to Holyoke Heritage State Park in Holyoke, Massachusetts.  Holyoke Heritage State Park includes: a Children’s Museum, the Volleyball Hall of fame, playgrounds, a Merry-Go-Round, and a Visitor Center which highlights Holyoke’s paper manufacturing history.  There are pathways throughout the Park, including along the canal which once powered the local mills.

We had a unique Adventure to the Holyoke Heritage State Park on a windy New England day.  The Park was small, and mostly suited for those with indoor plans in mind, especially ideal for children, volleyball enthusiasts, and those interested in industrial history.  We wandered around every path in the Park, soon locating a map of the accessible paths.  I peered in the windows viewing the Merry-Go-Round and the smiles of children playing.  There were some murals, a large wheel, and a short, but lovely walk along the canal.  We met many children who were eager to see the dogs, the only furry friends around!  Wilma threw herself on the ground, rolling in eager anticipation of guests, while Shadow enjoyed his “normal” Adventure rolls.  We spent about forty five minutes exploring the grounds of the property, Shadow and Wilma appreciating the smells of a new Adventure.  Glad we could find a new location for a walk today (Blog will not be rated as only the grounds were explored).

Throwback Adventure – Douglas State Forest – September 2012

I will have sections of my blog that I will title “Throwback Adventure”, and will plan on posting them every Thursday. These are journeys we have taken before I started the blog, but are well worth sharing. Many of these Throwback Adventures will include our Buster, who was known for his crazy tail, his happy howl, and his zest for life. We miss him dearly…he is forever in our hearts!

In September 2012 Shadow, Buster, and I Adventured to Douglas State Forest in Douglas, Massachusetts.  Douglas State Forest is a 5,907 acre forest that includes Wallum Lake.  The Forest is popular for hiking, and swimming.  It is managed by the Massachusetts Department of Conservation of Recreation.

We had a wonderful Adventure to Douglas State Forest.  Douglas State Forest was one of our first Adventures after we relocated to Massachusetts.  On our visit we enjoyed resting on the shore, dips in the Lake, climbing boulders, and of course some hiking and exploring.  I find myself chuckling every time I look at the photograph of Buster with his eyes closed. Although I am guessing he must have blinked I always joke how he must be thinking “really another photo Mom”.  I find it quite humorous.  Douglas State Forest has a good mix of outdoors activities.  We may have to visit again in the future (Throwback blogs will not always be rated).


July 1, 2019 – Ware – Hardwick Covered Bridge – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma, My Mom and I Adventured to the Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge in Gilbertville, Massachusetts.  The Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge was built in the 1800s.  It spans the Ware River, and is one of the few original covered bridges in the state.

We had a fun Adventure to the Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge.  We had just finished a walk at Dunn State Park in Gardener Massachusetts.  Dunn State Park is a small, and simple park yet quite pretty.  I decided not to blog about Dunn State Park today as I have done so previously, however you can read this blog at:, or by typing it directly into the search box.   (This is my first attempt at linking a direct website to an individual blog so bear with me if it is not successful on this first try.)

We arrived at the Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge to find parking a bit limited so my Mom and I took turns walking through and along the Bridge.  We were also able to wander down to the waters edge to take some photographs and enjoy the sounds of the rushing River. The Bridge was especially lovely from the side with a colorful wood grained panel framing the top of the lattice windows.  The red front did not appear to match the style of the side, however added some bright color to the structure.  We sauntered back and forth, pleased to see minimal vehicle traffic and no other visitors.  A short but nice visit to the Ware-Hardwick Covered Bridge today (Rating:  3)