Our Monday date took us to Sabattus Mountain in Lovell this morning. It’s an easy trek offering great views, lots of wildlife activity and a decent workout in a short amount of time.
Which way should we go? I ask myself that question over and over again. Habit took us up the right-hand trail, but in hindsight, maybe we should have mixed it up this time. A life lesson?
Check out this burl. Over and under and around, oh my!
I stood at this spot on the trail and looked down–Lots of beech, hemlock, birch and maple in the mix.
And then I turned to look up the trail. Oak, pine and hemlock dominated the scenery. A transition point.
Speaking of transitions, this hemlock grew apart after a couple of years. With two rather than one terminal leaders growing side by side, they eventually found their way back together.
Here they are woven back together–it’s almost difficult to tell that the two have become one. It made me think of our relationship as we trekked up the mountain. Maybe this tree didn’t really grow apart, the two parts just respected each other as their life together began and they allowed each other to continue growing in their own way, knowing that they needed to stay together ultimately because being united and supportive is what it’s all about. And maybe I’m reading way too much into a natural occurrence.
A porcupine tree. Lots of porcupine activity in the hemlock grove both on this trail and on the way down.
A well-traveled porcupine trail.
The concrete stanchions that once supported a fire tower. Apparently, the tower was removed in 1963.
Perfect spot for a hot cocoa break.
Eastern White Pine and Northern Red Oak–looks like the oak is ahead in the race to the sun right now. I wonder if that’s how it will play out over the years.
And then there’s the other bench at the summit. We couldn’t actually sit on this one.
Heading along the ridge, we found these prints that always excite me. This critter had traveled to and fro before going off trail. Notice the “C” shape between the toes and the pad. C is for cat. Yup, a bobcat. And it was at some point in the last six hours or so, because we’d had a dusting of snow. These were fresh. Yippee!
A bobcat is a “perfect” walker. Ah, perfection. But really, it places a front foot down, and as that foot moves forward, the hind foot steps into its place. I think you can see that here–it looks like it might be two feet sharing almost the same space.
Breakfast? The bobcat obviously snatched some little brown thing–or tried to. This was just off the man-made snowshoe trail and right by the ledge. I was a bit surprised that the cat had followed the trail for as long as it had. They usually cross our trails and have their own corridor. But, it sure makes for easier traveling to follow where others have gone before.
This old oak has seen better days. Amazing that it’s still standing.
But then I looked up. We all need the support of a friend. In this case, the friend is a white pine. They may compete for sunlight, but apparently they can count on each other occasionally.
Heading down. Transitioning again. There were a zillion snowshoe hare trails. And mice. And squirrel. Good feeding grounds for a bobcat.
We finished up our trek before we were hungry for lunch. But, when hunger struck we ate PB&J sandwiches beside Kezar Lake.
Thanks for wondering along on this wander through the Maine woods.
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