SANDWICH NOTCH/SMARTS BROOK RAMBLE, 5/19/17
On a cool, cloudy, breezy spring afternoon and evening, I enjoyed a leisurely low-elevation loop, partly on trails and partly bushwhacking. A nice quiet day in the woods.
From the Smarts Brook trailhead, I went up the Tri-Town Trail and then veered off onto the Atwood Ski Trail, which is mostly used by mountain bikers.
It was looking very spring-like here.
A fine sitting ledge on the shore of Atwood Pond beckoned for a break.
A rare mellow stretch on Sandwich Notch Road.
I headed up a ridge to a nameless 2200-ft. knob I had visited last year. This shoulder featured open, mossy spruce woods.
These woods had the look of old pastureland, from the days in the mid-1800s when Sandwich Notch was home to a thriving farming community.
This appears to be a massive old-field maple.
Fallen ferns in a natural meadow.
A glimpse of Carr Mountain.
One of the objectives of this trek was to check out two open maple glades I found last year, as possible rich woods sites with Dutchman's Breeches. Alas, none were found, but this is a gorgeous Catskill-like glade.
I took a break atop this little rocky knob.
Magnificent woods in this area.
I stumbled upon this stark and desolate spruce bog.
Farther up the ridge was the second glade I wanted to check. No rare flowers here, either, but an inviting scene nonetheless.
Random ledge on the ridge, a shoulder of Black Mountain.
View of the Campton Range from the top of a sloping ledge-meadow.
Mt. Morgan and East Weetamoo.
Tufts in the woods.
A natural tombstone.
Black cherry trees, which are fairly unusual in the Whites.
Wonderful whackin' heading down to Smarts Brook.
A fine cascade on a nameless tributary of Smarts Brook.
This brook was loaded with small cascades.
A ledgy waterslide.
And yet another cascade.
Sachem Peak overlooks the Smarts Brook beaver pond.
Evening glow on Black Mountain and Sandwich Dome.
Spring foliage on the flank of Black Mountain.
The Smarts Brook Cascade, always a pretty spot.