Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Beaver Brook Falls, Keene, New Hampshire

Tuesday, Nov. 7, 2017 - Wendy left a sleeping bag in Keene, New Hampshire at a retreat a couple of weeks ago, so I decided to go up and retrieve it:

Up 93, then west-southwest to Keene, returning southeast-east via Route 2 and 495.

I couldn't fit in a mountain climb, but I googled "waterfalls keene new hampshire", and up popped Beaver Brook Falls! It is not listed in our New England Waterfalls book (200 waterfalls), BUT IT IS IN THEIR 2nd EDITION (400 waterfalls) (sounds like a great Christmas gift - ssssh, don't tell). The waterfall is just north of Keene, so it is perfect that I am coming in from the northeast:

It was a nice day to get out and stretch my legs - parked at the gate and walked up the old blacktop. Beaver Brook runs downhill towards me, from right-to-left under the road:

Looking upstream:

The waterfall was supposed to be only 1/2 mile up the "trail", but at 0.61 miles, I saw this "cascading water feature" across the Brook - could that be the falls in the dry days of November?:

I decided NO, and continued up the trail (road).

Sure enough, less than a quarter mile farther, I could see the Falls in the distance:

There is a nice Donation Marker:

Beaver Brook Falls are flowing wonderfully:

and the view back downstream is beautiful:

0.8 miles back down to the car (1.6 miles total), into Keene to get the sleeping bag, and down into Massachusetts. Home by 3 PM. It was another beautiful day for a Fall drive in New England. Thank you God for these wonderful adventures!

Today, it was more musc from my purple nano:

The Yardbirds - Yardbirds Greatest Hits 1967

Michael Franti and Spearhead - Yell Fire!, 2006

I remember discovering Michael Franti probably 10 years ago, and being wonderfully impressed at his combination of rock-and-reggae

Yes - The Yes Album, 1971

The Beatles - "Yesterday" and Today, 1966

Wikipedia has a nice article about this album - a hodge-podge of songs that had appeared on other British-released albums, and even songs which were only released as singles (both sides of the double A-side single "Day Tripper"/"We Can Work It Out"). Interestingly, the production on those 2 songs on this album is much better (slightly louder, cleaner, more punch) than the other songs on this album. FUN.

The Steve Miller Band - Your Saving Grace, 1969

This was the fourth album by the Steve Miller Band. John Milward wrote in The Rolling Stone Record Guide (first printing, 1979) about the band's first 3 albums: "Diehards contend that this was the Steve Miller Band's prime, and it's awfully hard to dispute the point." I'm one of those "diehards", but I would also include their/his 4th album ("Your Saving Grace") (with Ben Sidran on organ and electric piano) and 5th album ("Number 5").

The Police - Zenyatta Mondatta, 1980

various artists - Zoolander, 2001 soundtrack

Neil Young & Crazy Horse - Zuma, 1975

Friday, October 27, 2017

Hike to Lake Solitude (back side of Sunapee)

Friday, Oct. 27, 2017 - I wanted to revisit "the hike that started it all" (My 1st 4,000 footer - Mount Tecumseh - was on Sunday June 22, 2014). My "first hike" was up the backside of Mount Sunapee in New Hampshire 3 weeks earlier, on June 7, 2014 - there were blue blazes on the trees, and Lake Solitude was BEAUTIFUL:

as was the view from Mount Sunapee:

But this is not a blog about 3 years ago - it is a blog about TODAY!:

We started hiking about 11:15:

Andrew Brook was ROARING:

and Wendy did a GREAT JOB hiking up through the fall woods:

although it did get a little tricky crossing the Brook (many times!):

The "old-birch-tree-growing-over-the-moss-covered-boulder" was a nice touch:

The hike was "supposed to be" 2 miles up, and 2 miles back. After 2.65 miles (and over 2 hours) hiking up trails-that-were-streams-with-boulders, Wendy had had enough and stoped for lunch. I continued on a bit farther, and Lake Solitude was once again very beautiful:

We headed back down, and it was much faster going-down - we wound up doing 5.37 miles total in 4 hours 3 minutes:

It was a beautiful day for a Fall drive in New England, and we got home in time for dinner-before-church. Thank you God for these wonderful adventures!

Today, it was musc from my purple nano:

Dave Matthews Band - Live At Red Rocks 8.15.95 1997 live album (2 cds)

Jackson Browne - Lawyers In Love, 1983

Led Zeppelin - Houses of the Holy, 1973

Thursday, October 19, 2017

NE 100 Highest - East Sleeper, New Hampshire

Thursday, Oct. 19, 2017 - The New England "100 Highest" - East Sleeper, New Hampshire:

There is always "another list". Having finished with the New England 4000 Footers (67 peaks), the "next list" is the New England Highest 100 - it consists of the "next highest" 33 peaks in New England. If you have been following my blog, you know that it is a "list I will not complete" - there was NO TRAIL to Fort Mountain (it is the far-upper-right black X). A new black X addition to the map (in the middle) is the Peak Above the Nubble - all its hiking descriptions include the word BUSHWACK!

The other 6 I have done (South Brother, Mount Coe, Mount Bigelow-South Horn, The Cannon Balls-NE Peak, Jay Peak, and Big Jay) are marked with red X's, and today's peak East Sleeper is in the purple circle. Today I hiked 13.31 miles in 5 hours 15 minutes:

The Google Earth view, looking up Downes Brook Trsil

The red in the upper-left is a hike I did in 2014 to Mount Whiteface. Here is a Google-Earth-screenshot of today's East Sleeper hike among other hikes I have done along the Kancamagus Highway (State Route 112) in New Hampshire:

After breakfast-in-Boston, I returned some cds in Winchester, then continued up 93 North. Stopped for coffee and gas in Tilton, New Hampshire, and to mail a postcard in Lincoln, New Hampshire. The Kanc has new blacktop, and is a BEAUTIFUL ROAD. Its a BEAUTIFUL day in New England! Parked at the trailhead, and started my hike at 12:25. Downes Brrok Trail is the "nicest trail I have ever been on":

(not "the BEST", or "the Most Rewarding", but just really really "NICE".)

The trail is generally an old logging road, running straight and true, and crosses over Downes Brook 9 TIMES:

and there are usually easy cairns to mark the brook-crossings:

Downes Brook Trail is 5.2 miles long, and for much of that goes right alongside Downes Brook. It ends at the Kate Sleeper Trail, which runs along the top of the ridge from Whiteface to the Pyramids:

There are some "blow-down" areas:

and one moss-covered, rock-climbing area

0.8 miles west, and you come to an unmarked path leading up to the right, to the summit (3:30 PM):

nice forest up there:

OK views from the blow-down areas:

But the hike was really about Downes Brook: looking upstream

and downstream

around 4 o'clock.

I made GREAT TIME heading down, and I finished the hike at 5:40. The sun was going down, and I was heading home!

Until I got 30 minutes down the road - my 2015 Honda Fit STOPPED WORKING as I was going up the hill next to Chocorua Lake:

It was like I "dropped the transmission" on the old BMW 2002tii (which I did coming out of Boston one Thursday morning on Route 1 North). The "engine" worked, but nothing was going to the wheels, either in Drive or in Reverse. I coasted back down the hill, with my red flashers on, and got to the side of the road. There was NO CELL PHONE SERVICE, so I just waited for 1 hour 30 minutes until a super-nice guy in a truck stopped and asked if I was ok. He let me use his phone (SURE, HE GETS RECEPTION!!), and I spoke with AAA. A tow guy was there 15 minutes later, and he towed me south to Tice's Automotive Services in Tamworth. It turns out that it is RIGHT NEXT DOOR to the Day's Inn I stayed at in August 2015!! So that's where I spent the night.

I'm certainly wondering how "car breaks down" fits into God's plans, but I still have to say "THANK YOU GOD for all these wonderful hiking adventures!!!"

Today, it was a morning for jazz:

Chick Corea Akoustic Band - Alive 1991 live album

Gary Burton, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, Roy Haynes, Dave Holland - Like Minds, 1998

Chick Corea, Miroslav Vitous, Roy Haynes - Trio Music Live in Europe, 1986 live album

and then it was time for some Rock and Roll!!
various artists - Lipstick Hits, 2000

Jefferson Airplane - The Woodstock Experience, 1969 live

21-minute version of "Wooden Ships"!!!!