Wednesday, December 31, 2014


Out in the quiet woods of the far western White Mountains, I enjoyed a brisk 4 1/2 mile walk on a cold but sunny and beautiful morning. The old South Landaff Road spins off the Cobble Hill Trail 0.7 mile in from Rt. 112 and leads past stone walls, cellar holes, orchards and other remnants of a remote late 1800s hill farming community. Walking conditions were good with the usual mud pits on the old road (largely from illegal ATV use) frozen.

The Cobble Hill Trail is an old logging road that starts on Rt. 112 west of the Rt. 116 junctions. A short way up the trail there's a fine cascade on Dearth Brook; to get a clear look you must make a mini-bushwhack.

About 0.3 mile up the old South Landaff Road is this apple orchard on the right, maintained by the Forest Service as a wildlife food source.

From the west edge there's a glimpse of nearby Cobble Hill.

Much of the South Landaff Road is lined with old stone walls.

Great walking on a cold sunny morning.

I wondered what this rock obelisk was used for in the old days.

From an orchard about 1 1/2 miles up the South Landaff Road there's a vista of Black Mountain in the Benton Range.

And a glimpse of Mt. Moosilauke. If you look closely you can see the huge slide unleashed by Tropical Storm Irene in 2011. The views must have been superb when this area was mostly open fields.

Heading back along the road.

A sturdy old oak.

This large tree grew through a hoop or carriage wheel rim.

One of several old foundations/cellar holes hidden in the woods near the road.

A rusted remnant of an old vehicle.

Another foundation.

Relics from the old farming days of more than a century ago. This is a fascinating area to explore, but please leave things as you found them, for others to enjoy.

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