Wednesday, June 8, 2016

June a month of Festivals

Mountain Laurel getting ready to bloom. 
Orange Salamander crossing road.
So June is the month for festivals; the Rattlesnake festival this coming weekend and the Mountain Laurel festival the weekend of the 25th. I took a 2 mile walk today up the mountain to the pipeline and noticed the Mountain Laurel will be opening soon and should be in full bloom for the festival. The temperature took a bit of a dive from the 80's to the 50's making the walk up hill a lot more enjoyable.
During the hike, the dogs and I saw one of the colorful, orange salamander's crossing the road. I saw several deer with fawns over the last couple days and turkey now that the hunting is done all the animals seem to know and show up a bit more.
I spent a few days at camp cutting willows down in the creek, which seem to grow as fast as I cut them. I also got to replace my water heater. A job thanks to its location in the basement which is made harder by the fact that I had to maneuver a 148 lb heater through a closet and down a trap door. The new ones have a plastic control valve that you have to make sure not to bang against anything or you will have a broken water heater. When it was all said and done I decided someone else will lift then next one down the hole in 10 to 14 years, cause if I try this in my 70's the water heater will probably be my headstone. 
Even with all the work, I dreaded coming back to Wellsboro tonight and returning to work tomorrow. The woods always calls my name. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Memorial Day in Leetonia...things to do.

There are two interesting things to do related to Memorial Day in and near Leetonia. First is to go up to Leetonia Cemetery and visit the soldiers grave sites.  This site is just about 600 yards down Francis Leetonia Rd to the left as you come up to Leetonia from the South. The graveyard is on a steep hill. There is also a row of babies buried up there from a whopping cough epidemic in the late 1870's. As you go up the hill you will notice an old foundation. That was the site of the first school house/church/meeting room in Leetonia.

The next thing involves a bit of driving out to Captain Lawrence Ritter's crash site. In 1946 this pilot crashed his WW2 P47 into the side of the mountain and was not found until 7 months later by bear hunters. I have instructions at the link to get there. If you are not familar with the roads but know where my place is. You head to the right out of my driveway and make the first left towards Cushman view then down the mountain and the first right is Francis Leetonia Rd. follow site directions and pictures from there. This involves about 3.5 miles of hiking to get to the wreckage site. Please do not take any of the wreckage out of respect.

Enjoy the weekend, but take a little time to remember all those who came, fought and died before us. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

BRIDGE IS OPEN!

Just a quick message to all wanting to come up to Leetonia for Memorial Weekend. The bridge in Leetonia opened back up this morning so no more detour!  Have a great weekend in the best place on earth. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

Monday, May 23, 2016

A walk in the Woods

Red Clover

Yellow Wood Sorrel
We were back up in the woods from Saturday through Monday. It rained on Saturday and Sunday, but today was beautiful. I took some flower pictures on our walk. The color on the red clover was especially nice. Lee has been battling a Robin trying to build a nest under the porch. I think the Robin is winning, but they are both persistent. However, the place will be rented through Memorial weekend and that will give the bird plenty of time to set up a nest. There have been a lot of birds lately we have two pairs of Indigo Buntings, which we think are prettier than blue birds, finches, an assortment of wrens, and a Northern Flicker poking at the yard. Lee doesn't have her 16 hummingbird feeders up at camp since we won't be around to fill them or protect them from the bears. Lee hasn't had any luck getting the hummingbirds to travel to her feeders in Wellsboro. I guess they didn't get the forwarding address.
Word on the bridge that is out in Leetonia is that it may be open before Memorial Day Weekend. We can all hope as the detour adds at least a half hour drive and the road is horrible going around. We met a friend on our walk this morning finishing up his turkey hunting for the morning. He said he didn't see a thing, but the weather was nice and it didn't seem like it mattered. 
Also good news, Snaggle Nose, the bear, made it through another year. He was photographed by John down at the Tannery on a game camera. Hopefully, he will send me a picture so I can update it. Snaggle Nose must be at least 10 and seems to be an expert on evading the hunters each year. He is the biggest bear in Leetonia now and all the others run when they see him.
Even though I am a short distance away in Wellsboro, I cherish the time to just drive up and be in Leetonia. I always feel home there. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Bridge work continues along with a little May combo weather

Hail and snow

Bridge in Leetonia looking South

Bridge in Leetonia looking North
Good new they got the concrete poured on the bridge in Leetonia right before the weekend. Bad news is it will probably still be closed another 2 weeks while it cures and they fill in around it. Lee, Speck, Leo and I walked down from the house to the bridge about 1 3/4 mile on Saturday. It was a pleasant walk in the mid 50's. On Sunday however the weather changed for the worse. We woke up to 35 degrees and rain, which turned to sleet, snow, sun and anything else it could think of during the day Sunday. During one of the sunny spells we  walked up the road a little over a mile and enjoyed all the new foliage coming out. I noticed a lot of olive,honeysuckle, and maple growing up in the area just to the north of us that was select cut about 5 years ago. Unfortunately, not many young oaks to be found. Speaking of Oaks it looks like they will be logging along the half mile trail some time soon as many of the oaks there are dying. So enjoy the trail while you can. Lee and I have been working our way down the Mid-State Trail and have made it from NY state line to Blackwell about 75 miles of hiking so far. The trail goes all the way to Maryland(about 325 miles) so we have a bit farther to go. There are definitely some pretty sections one of the nicest so far being along Stony Fork Creek.  Our last section of hiking from Clay Mine Rd down to Blackwell is up on Youtube and can check out the video of it at the link.  Next week we will be back up into more seasonable temperatures of 60's and 70's during the day so it will be a nice time to come up to the woods. Mountain Girl, Paula, logging out.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Leetonia a time of detours

My truck after the detour

Sign coming into Leetonia from the South
If you want to cross the bridge in Leetonia you are out of luck for at least a month. They are resurfacing it. This is the bridge right after the Tannery coming into town from the South. The detour is Francis Leetonia up to Cushman and back down. I went this way and it is a muddy mess right now. In several spots it would be hard going in a car. Not only road closed in Leetonia, but up towards Painter Leetonia where is crosses to connect with Thompson Hollow. That bridge has been totally pulled out, which usually means 2-3 months of work.
With my luck I managed to hit both spots in one day. I was hauling hikers up from Rattlesnake Rock to the beginning of the West Rim Trail on the other side of Colton point. The detour for that one goes down a logging road that connects to Mill Road another mud filled experience. So for all you campers out there be ready for some extra fun driving through the woods.

I spent the weekend at my place doing some spring maintenance and enjoying the quiet only found in the woods. Lee and I have been doing the Mid-State Trail and did an amazing hike full of waterfalls near Stony Fork Creek.  you can check out the Youtube video at that link. We have done a total of 65 miles of the Mid-State Trail which runs 325 miles from NY to Maryland right through the heart of our area. We plan to chip away at the entire trail.

The Turkey hunters were everywhere Saturday as it was opening day. I am thinking they had a rough time of it because the gobblers where more active a month ago with all the warm weather we had. I saw a big gobbler coming off the Mid-State Trail on Tannery Rd at around 5PM. They can tell time real well. Sorry I haven't posted more often. Seems like I am on the run, I will try to pick things up a bit for you all. I have my place rented out much of the summer on AirBnb if any of you want to stay at the mountain girl's place you can rent it at the link. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Warm winter continues


Trestle Hollow Camp


Top end of Trail at intersection of logging Rd.
Mom and 3 cubs on Painter Leetonia Rd.
Before we got to camp a good sized coyote ran across the front of the car. He looked very well fed and was in a hurry to get out of our way. Today it was 63 degrees on top the mountain at the end of Trestle Hollow Trail. Lee and I have been up to camp every weekend with the weather staying warm and very little ice and snow. We walked the about 2 miles of Trestle Hollow over to West Rim. The first part of the trail has obviously been cared for by someone cutting limbs and trees out of the way. The second part was not as well maintained as the first and needs some tender loving care. Along the trail we saw a lot of turkey tracks and a few deer tracks and pawing of the ground looking for food. We hiked in light shirts without jackets with the weather so warm. After the trail we headed up Painter-Leetonia and there to our surprise was a mom bear and her 3 cubs. They were taking advantage of the good weather and low snow cover to look for food as well. Mom and cubs looked on the small side even though the cubs were obviously born last year. So it was a good day in the woods. I didn't want to leave. Mountain girl, Paula, logging out.