April 6, 2019 – Malcolm Preserve – Massachusetts

Today we Adventured to the Malcolm Preserve, a property of the Trustees of Reservations and Carlisle Conservation Foundation.  Malcolm Preserve is a 11 acre property that is part of 1,300acres of protected land.  Malcolm Preserve was previously used as farmland.

We had a local Adventure to the Malcolm Preserve on a dreary, yet perfect spring day.  This was one of those Adventures that I debated blogging about as really a quite simple, and almost unappealing Preserve.  However, a change of pace for those locals who may be looking for a new spot, and anywhere is a happy time for those furry best friends!

We began our Adventure today excited for a short drive and a new property to explore.  We arrived at the well marked parking lot of Malcolm Preserve, eager for a walk.  We began our Adventure near some homes before ending up on the trail through the woods.  There were some markers of names along the way, but no map, or instructions as to where they might lead.  We decided to mostly veer straight, appearing to follow the Estabrook Woods trail.  There were few visitors allowing a peaceful stroll, until we wandered past a loud construction site, crashing us out of our therapeutic oasis.  There was lots of mud on the trails, and a couple small areas of water, complete with the song of a babbling brook.  The trails were often lined with rock walls, adding some scenery to the dull landscape.  We ran into several other dog walkers and were pleased that they were quite considerate of others.  These visitors were friendly, and my guess was likely locals to this conservation area.

One of the spectacular things about living in New England is the amazing changes in seasons, causing you to appreciate the little details that often can go unnoticed.  Today I was so pleased to see merely see the glorious color of green, as nature has begun to spring up.  As we finished our hike, walking almost three miles we were pleased to see the sun, and ready to head home for some backyard fun.  We are certainly enjoying our spring Adventures in New England.

If you may be wondering I located the Malcolm Preserve through the Trustees of Reservations which I have been learning about in the last several months.  I would encourage you to check out the Trustees of Reservations, as you can search for properties in your area.  Many of the land, trails, and properties are absolutely lovely, and the Trustees of Reservations does wonderful work to preserve the land and history throughout Massachusetts.  So although I did not find today’s Adventure up there with some of the rest, there are so many others worth exploring.  However we still enjoyed our outing today visiting the Malcolm Preserve.  A great way to start a gorgeous spring day in New England (Rating:  2).

 

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March 3, 2019 – Sabbaday Falls – Winter Visit – New Hampshire

Yesterday Shadow, Wilma and I Adventured to Sabbaday Falls.  I have blogged about this location previously in my “Throwback Adventure” section, however decided to blog about it again as this was our first visit in Winter.  Sabbaday Falls is a popular waterfall located in Waterfall Valley, along the Kancamagus Highway in New Hampshire. There is a short, handicapped accessible travel trail to Sabbaday Falls. Sabbaday Falls is an approximate thirty five to forty five foot drop, ending in a Gorge-like area. The waterfall is made up of a series of cascades.

We had a spectacular, icicle-filled Adventure to Sabbaday Falls on a warm, Winter day.  This Winter Adventure looked completely different then this location in the other seasons.  I was ecstatic to see the parking lot plowed, and a path in place for the hike as I had tried once before to visit this Falls in Winter with no luck.  We began our journey up and over a gigantic snowbank, and immediately arrived on the trail.  The trail branched over to the stream on two occasions, however not being able to see the rocks or our footing we did not venture too far in that direction.  However  the mysterious covered stream created a lovely Winter scene with framed circles forming here and there.

We continued on the main trail.  I suspect the snow was several feet high as I noticed we were walking almost at the top of the railing of a fence, on the groomed snow path.  As long as we stayed on the trail we did not sink down, and were able to walk steadily along.  It did not take us long to arrive at the Falls.  Most of the waterfall was covered with snow, which must have been sitting over the frozen ice.  I was pleased that we had been there previously as we would have really not known the “normal” flow of the Falls.

The most gorgeous part of the area was some spectacular icicles coming down the rocks, at the bottom area of the cascades.  Below the icicles there was a gorgeous rock filled pool with flowing water.  I really could not get enough of this special scene.  Shadow humored me as he continually tried to dive into the water pool, although wondering if he might get stuck, I decided it best not to swim at this location.  He sure is one adventurous water boy!

It was really a magical Adventure at this gorgeous location.  I would encourage you to visit Sabbaday Falls once in every season as it is just a lovely spot.  So glad we were able to get in our winter visit (Rating:  5).

 

 

Throwback Adventure – Crystal Cascade – New Hampshire

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 October of 2016 Shadow, Buster, My Mom and I Adventured to the Crystal Cascade in the White Mountains of New Hampshire.  Crystal Cascade is a gorgeous waterfall that has a 100 foot drop into the Ellis River.  There is just a short walk to the Falls that begins at the AMC Pinkham Notch Visitor Center.  The Cascade is along one of the popular routes to Mount Washington.

We had a special Adventure to the Crystal Cascade on a beautiful Fall day.  Buster had recently been diagnosed with a terminal tumor, and we knew his time was limited.  This made the memories even more marked as I recall this lovely Adventure.  It was a short walk to the Crystal Cascade with a slight elevation gain. The trail was simple, but perfectly Fall in color.  Upon arrival we found a steep, little trail to sneak close to the beautiful Falls.  The Falls was singing loudly, and provided a full sensory experience.  Buster enjoyed chewing some sticks while Shadow sat and posed for the camera.  There were limited spots to view the waterfall, so we were glad to find this spot all to ourselves.

We spent some time at the Crystal Cascade before heading past the waterfall to a little bridge across the top.  There were absolutely stunning Fall views from this spot with the musical waterfall below below.  An absolutely magnificent scene that we thoroughly enjoyed.   I was actually planning to visit again this past summer with Wilma and Shadow but the trails were closed due to flooding.  However we do hope to visit again on another date.  Please see below some photos and videos of our special day at Crystal Cascade.  In one of the videos you will see a conversation between my Mom and Buster, as he was a talker, often known for his happy howl.  Glad to create special memories on our Adventure to Crystal Cascade.

 

February 9, 2019 – Fruitlands Museum – Massachusetts

Yesterday Shadow, Wilma, and I Adventured to Fruitlands Museum in Harvard, Massachusetts.  Fruitlands Museum is a museum celebrating multiple visions of America on the site of a utopian community.  It connects nature and culture with a variety of exhibits.  It is on 210 acres of property which also includes hiking trails, a store, special events, and a cafe.

We enjoyed a gusty Adventure to Fruitlands Museum, a place we have been to on at least on two other occasions.  We started off in the museum area, with lovely views, perfectly shaped buildings, and unique statues along the road.  The area is always perfectly groomed, although little landscape to see in the winter months.  We walked through the exhibits heading down the hill, the wind incredibly breezy, almost pushing us back.  We appreciated the museum area visually before heading to the trails.

We spent most of our time exploring the trails on the property.  The trails were marked well with color, winding through the woods, up and down some hills and through a field.  We saw some deer from afar, enjoyed some boardwalk trails and dodged slippery ice patches along the way.  The trails were very simple, and somewhat blah in the brown of winter.  There were kiosks along the way providing information, and numbers to label different parts of the trails.  We especially enjoyed the hike through the field adding a variety in the color, with some perfect hay-like grass for Wilma and Shadow to partake in some synchronized rolls.  The hike was somewhat eerie with squeaking trees, not a person in site, and gun shots from afar.  Although I had called to make sure there was no hunting at this site, the sounds caused some worry, and masked the “normal” relaxation of the hike.  However, we carried on and were glad to get some exercise on this February winter day.

So as you know, we only explore part of the Fruitland Museums property as the Shadow and Wilma were not invited into the museum buildings.  Therefore we will not rate this Adventure for our readers, but definitely a unique local spot for an Adventure.  Below you will see photographs from our visit yesterday, and a past visit with Shadow, Buster, and My Mom (although this past visit was more a relaxing time viewing the sunset, versus exploring.)

 

February 9, 2019

 

 

Fall 2016

February 2, 2019 – Norris Reservation – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma and I Adventured to the Norris Reservation in Norwell, Massachusetts.  Norris Reservation is a 129 acre park run by the Trustees of Reservation.  The Reservation includes:  boardwalks, ponds, a small brook, a boathouse, and many trails.  Some of the trails parallel the North River.  The area is popular for walking, snow shoeing, dog walking and fishing.

We had a wonderful Adventure to the Norris Reservation on a chilly February day.  I recently had been reading about the wonderful parks under The Trustees of Reservation and was excited to check out the Norris Reservation, free of charge.  We started off our hike along the main trail, walking past an icy-filled babbling brook, and a frozen pond.  We soon veered to the right eager to follow the Gordon Pond trail, complete with boardwalks!  Although occasionally you could see the road to the right, overall the trail was lovely, many boardwalks, benches, bridges, and some square stones grooming the trails.  The ice was making cracking, and gurgling sounds, one feature I love in the frigid New England weather.

From the Gordon Trail we looped around on the outer loops of the various trails which followed the North River before looping back to the parking lot.  The River was a bright blue framed by tan grass along the shore.  We walked out to the River’s edge on several occasions checking out the ice, and water.   Shadow and Wilma were enthused with this detour often rolling in the grass and engaging in energized play.  Along the way we also found the beautiful boathouse.  We sauntered through the house enjoying the windows with the perfectly framed scenery and the view from the front porch.  Quite a lovely and unique structure along the way.

The trails were simple but the features, and water along the way made for an absolutely lovely hike.  It was nice to see maps available at the entrance, and along way to guide your way.  Throughout our Adventure we saw numerous dog walkers, and others out on this cold day, many stopping to chat and say hello.  It was a refreshing day at this special Reservation.  I do hope we will be back again (Rating:  4).  (The videos are currently having difficulty downloading, so may be added at a later date).

February 2, 2019 – Hemlock Gorge Reservation – Massachusetts

Today Shadow, Wilma, and I Adventured to the Hemlock Gorge Reservation in Newton, and Needham, Massachusetts.  Hemlock Gorge Reservation is an urban state park that is approximately 16 acres in size.  It is on the Charles River and is especially known for the Echo Bridge, and a waterfall.

We had a unique Adventure to the Hemlock Gorge Reservation on this dark and chilly February day.  I found this Reservation when planning a visit to the Echo Bridge, soon finding that the Bridge was located in the Hemlock Gorge Reservation.  We began our journey following a very simple, snow covered trail.  The trail was in close range to the Charles River, located to our right.  The trail weaved up and around, soon leading us to a lovely waterfall.  The waterfall sang a beautiful song, and was framed by frozen ice, and snow covered icicles, quite the picturesque scene.  We enjoyed the sound of the falls, and the winter scene before turning to our left where we saw the Echo Bridge.  The Bridge was grand in size, with arches below.  We walked to the water’s edge to get a better view as Shadow and Wilma enjoyed the ice and some sips from the River.

We then headed to the top of the Bridge and noticed we could walk across the top, displaying a lovely view from above.  We met a nice young lady, with a sweet little dog named Charlie.  The dogs said hello and she filled us in on the area, which was great as there really was little detailed information available.  We then continued over the Echo Bridge, down the stairs, and across the street to the well known platform said to have a special “Echo”.  I was completely awed at the grand echo from my voice, and quite humored by the dogs’ reaction looking around as they heard their names.  I attempted a video below, but the echo is very faint in the video.  It was quite the fun moment, definitely meeting all my expectations from my readings.

After enjoying the echo for a bit we headed back to a trail over to the “Island”.  We took a wrong turn before finding the trail leading to the “Island”.  There was a simple, but beautiful snow-covered bridge crossing over to this location.  We walked around a bit checking out the view of the River and the Echo Bridge from afar.  The busy roads were not far, reminding us that we were in an urban park, however there were very little visitors making it quiet in its own special way.

Although the Hemlock Gorge Reservation was a very simple urban park, it really did exceed my expectations.  I still am awed by the echo, loved the walk high atop the bridge, and enjoyed the picturesque winter waterfall.  If you are in the area definitely a fun little place to check-out (Rating:  3).

 

Throwback Adventure – Conservation Land – Massachusetts

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!

Shadow, Buster and I enjoyed many Adventures to an untitled, suspected conservation trail in Sterling, Massachusetts. These particular photos were from our visit in June 2014, although I am guessing I may have other photographs tucked away in my files. We absolutely loved visiting this trail. It was near ponds, streams, up hills, and through the woods. We rarely saw any other hikers and several times even saw beavers on our visits. There was a little waterfall nearby, and lot of spots for the boys to run and swim. It was a special location which really made you feel like you were deep in the wilderness. We often would branch of the trail and find secret spots to explore. It was an amazing and new Adventure each and every time, and carved many fun memories in my heart.

So if you are one of my followers, or visitors who is inspired to visit stops on our Adventures, you might be disappointed as I cannot provide you an exact location. However I again encourage you to enjoy your location conservation land. Many spectacular, and quiet spots to explore (Rating: 4).

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