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Old 07-18-2018, 07:36 AM   #1
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Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Edinburg, NY
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Second Pond


In the latest installment of the series, "Pooches by a Pond", I found myself and two of my loyal canine companions heading to Second Pond, in the Siamese Ponds Wilderness

Last Monday was predicted to be hot and sticky and it did not disappoint. So I chose a deep woods hike to avoid the worst of the sun. The trail head was well marked and easy to find and the trail easy to follow. Once again, we had the woods to ourselves.

Just a short distance from the start, we were able to admire this pretty beaver pond (photo 1) and a nice, sturdy log bridge over its outlet. (photo 2) We saw many interesting plants along the way including these shelf mushrooms (photo 3) and this plant with gorgeous blue berries. (photo 4) Does anyone know the name of this plant? Unfortunately, we did encounter copious amounts of stinging nettle and I was only wearing shorts. (I prefer to call it Devil's Torture.) It truly became nearly unbearable. I got about 3/4 of the way to the pond and seriously considered turning around. But I knew the dogs would love the pond and I didn't want to be a baby, so we continued.

We finally reached the pond and the dogs were happy to go in for a refreshing dip. The views are limited at the end of the trail, but I did find a nice rock on the shore where I could sit and enjoy my lunch. Silly and Vigor were kind enough to pose for a picture on the rock. (photo 5) The spot feels very remote. The tiny island is very picturesque. There was a loon a ways out on the pond, doing what loons do. But it was too far away for me to get a good picture.

I stayed longer than usual, because I was dreading the walk back in the heat and those &#!!! nettles. Then I decided to pull a MacGyver to see if there was some way I could protect my legs. I sorted thru my pack and found my little plastic emergency rain poncho. I've carried it for years but I had never used it. I had forgotten I even had it. I managed to fashion it into a skirt that hung from my waist down to just above my boots. I'm sure it looked goofy, but it worked like a charm. The walk back to the car was much more pleasant as a result. That poncho purchase may have been the best $1.00 I ever spent!!

Not a bad way to spend a hot Monday afternoon. This is another place I intend to explore on snowshoes one day.

Where to go next? Hmmmmm.....

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File Type: jpg Second 5.jpg (140.8 KB, 211 views)
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File Type: jpg Second 3.jpg (123.7 KB, 211 views)
File Type: jpg Second 4.jpg (134.9 KB, 210 views)
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Old 07-18-2018, 09:31 AM   #2
Hangin' by a thread
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Old 07-18-2018, 11:01 AM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2013
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Schip - Nice report and wonderful photos. As for the stinging nettles, where they grow you will quite often find jewelweed. If you do, crush the stems of the jewelweed and rub the liquid on the areas that have been effected by the nettles. This is an alternative when you're not carrying your poncho; although it will be after-the-fact instead of preventative.

That's all for now. Take care and until next well.


PS - If you're unfamiliar with the plant, here's some information on it:
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Old 07-18-2018, 02:57 PM   #4
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Nice TR. Great pics! Could only guess about the berries however stinging nettles are a great edible.
"A culture is no better than its woods." W.H. Auden
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Old 07-18-2018, 03:33 PM   #5
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Washing the nettle infected body part with water also helps.

It's only goofy if someone sees you wearing a makeshift clothing item.
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Old 07-22-2018, 05:50 PM   #6
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"Pooches by a Pond"!!!

Love it

Good idea on keeping the nettles off of your legs. Those things are nasty.
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Old 07-25-2018, 09:45 AM   #7
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The plant with the blue berries is as indicated before, Clintonia. The berries are poisonous ( at least what I saw in print said so) and can be a challenge when teaching youngsters about blue berry picking. I always point out that there are only a few and they are on the long stems, and the plant has large leaves, while blue berries are found in clusters, have very short attachment to the plant, and the plant has a multitude of tiny leaves.

"Devil's Torture" is very appropriate, part of why I always wear long pants and long sleeves shirts!
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Old 07-25-2018, 10:41 AM   #8
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Yes, according to Wiki, the berries are "mildly toxic and unpleasant tasting." I don't think they'll kill you, but you'll know right away, if you thought it was a blueberry. The other berries that look a lot like blueberries are Juniper berries. But of course the plant looks a lot different, so these are easy to sort out.

Nettle story: My wife and I were plowing through a field of nettles on a bushwhack (25 years ago). We were both wearing long pants (light nylon "wind pants"). She shaves her legs; I do not. The nettle "thorns" were just long enough to get to her skin through the fabric, and she got a very itchy nettling that lasted about ten minutes. In my case, the hair lofted the fabric just far enough away from my skin so that I did not get any effect from the nettles. Moral - not just long pants, but the right long pants!
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Old 07-25-2018, 01:39 PM   #9
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Moral - not just long pants, but the right long pants!

To my way of thinking the moral is to have hairy legs

Until next well.

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