Friday, July 24, 2015

Tri-County Marathon

Dry summer heat has returned. So what to do? The water! For some time, I've had several postcard images of a very large lake in eastern Worcester County. A lake containing quite a few rocky islands. With the appropriate access in hand, I set upon the water investigating each island, often with summer homes upon. Some pleasant paddling, but little at this point that I can positively identify of the old images. I suspect one - Bennett's Rock - may be a shoreline feature and that would require a much more extensive search.

An Indian cave (shelter) in Middlesex County

Later on that first day, I was very excited to locate a Middlesex County Indian cave that has long been lost and even thought destroyed. It is not much of a shelter, really just a split rock that has shifted and formed a small overhanging area. Afterwards, I visited a nearby similar - but smaller formation - that I first uncovered years ago, and originally thought might be the aforementioned Indian Cave.

The day was finished up with a quick trip into the Middlesex Fells expressly for the purpose of photographing one particular side of the Multiform Boulder seen during my April trip. The photo confirmed the second of my two antique glass slides, as being the same boulder.

The 'Multiform Boulder". From a late 1800s glass slide.

The second day was kicked off with a social visit to an area friend, checking out a kayak put-in I would use later that day (towards high tide), and a visit to Rafes Chasm. Since it was getting towards low tide, I carefully picked my way over to the Flume for some close up photos. Just before mid afternoon, I returned to the general area to do a kayak launch. My paddling took me out - and southwestward - for a look at several small, rocky islands. I was rewarded with a couple of small sea caves and an arch.

Sea arch formation off the Essex County coast.

A light schedule on the third day. I moved up to the north to check out their local Devil's Den, which recently, has come into the public domain. The Devil has a pulpit in the immediate area as well. The whole trip was finished off on the next day looking over some area conservation land that promised significant ledges. I barely scratched the surface here with bugs and heat being oppressive. So I removed myself to Thoreau Country (back in Middlesex County) to check on a future kayak put-in to explore some of Henry David's old haunts.

The Devil's Pulpit - hidden amongst the brush

Friday, July 17, 2015

Between a Rock and a Hard Place - Or a Frog and an Indian.

I've been wanting to head down into northwest Connecticut to finish up a search for the local Indian cave. And since I was heading south, a good time to investigate Frog's Landing. It was brought to my attention, in recent times the poor old froggie of Frog Rock fame was inaccessible.

The Frog - of Frog's Landing

Even though the Frog was mostly shutoff from easy access, I managed a way in. Then on to Connecticut where I tried an alternate route to Indian Cave. This proved to be a no go as I battled through dense growth which included much thorny brush. I eventually abandoned this approach, and returned to the original, attempted, access point visited last fall.

Eastward looking view of the Cave

Even this proved no easy feat, but bushwhacking and fording a stream brought me into a beautiful area of sylvan wilderness at the base of a mountain. Ledges at the base of that mountain contained the sought after cave. A weathered cave formation, it proved quite spacious at almost sixty feet long and up to twenty feet deep in one section. A couple fire rings gave testimony to it not being totally forgotten.

Westward looking view of the Cave