Monday, March 23, 2009

Fitzgerald Falls

It had definitely been a while for me when Cheo and I stepped out of the car to go hiking last Saturday. I mean, we had gone to Buttermilk Falls a few weeks before, but that was a 1 or 2 mile hike that was really just to be outside ... and on that hike we never really left the sight of the Palisades Mall. This time was better, a ten mile romp along the appalachian trail in southern New York, starting and ending with a beautiful waterfall and taking ponds, lakes, rock slides and vistas in between. A much need day outside, and since Saturday was a sunny 52°F, it was perfect.The hike was spectacular, starting with a wonderful view of Fitzgerald falls about half a mile in, and then following the stream for a ways before taking us up, down, up, down, up, down and up. On the way we passed several pretty excellent views (although I bet they look better in the summer when the hemlock is full and the rest of the forest is deep green), some small swamps with the requisite collection of squawking birds, several beautiful ponds and a lake, before climbing up the not-so-scary as it is named devils staircase and then turning back around to do it all again. As you can see here, I conquered the devil's staircase pretty easily.

The whole day took about 4 hours, we were really moving, and was a great release ... not much better than wandering around in nature yelling about science. And we did spend a good three hours arguing about ATP signaling, which was delightful (I am a serious dork). When we got back to the car I was surprised it was so quick, and it would have even been faster had we not stopped to take tons of pictures. Makes me really want to get back out there ...

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