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Monday, June 27th 2011

6:31 PM

Alander Mtn MA 6/27/11

     This is a guest blog by Bruce.  (See home page; Dickens has been diagnosed with bladder stones and will have surgery soon to remove them). 

     The trail sign and the map say this is a 7 mile round trip hike, but my guidebook says 5 miles.  The trail has a sign that says dogs must be on leash.  It also says no ATVs but I did see one on the trail on my way back.  For the most part the trail is in good shape but it does have a series of flooded areas due to our very wet Spring.  I would not recommend this trail for dogs because it is also used by horseback riders and you don't want to spook a horse that might be frightened by seeing a dog.

     I started hiking at 10:05 AM and saw a series of beautiful waterfalls.  Then I spent an hour hiking through an area just filled with profuse mountain laurel, acres upon acres of it.  This was obviously THE time to climb this mountain.

     I stopped just below the summit to sit on a rock and quaff some ice tea.  Two young German ladies came up the trail and spoke with me.  Later, they took my photo on the summit and I took theirs. 

     The summit has beautiful views of valleys down below as well as mountains in Massachusetts and a vast panorama out west showing the high Catskills on the horizon.  I arrived at the summit at 12:12 PM and had lunch.  I was not bothered by bugs all day, although there were some ants on the boulders where I had lunch.  What is a picnic without ants?

     By 1:04 PM I left the top and met a couple coming up the trail with an enormous Newfoundland named Huckleberry and a small dog named Finn.  On the way down I also saw a garter snake and an unidentified pretty blue flower.  I was out at 3:08 PM.


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