|GONewEngland BBQ - August 19
Activity run by Alison O.
Photos by Ken L. - remember to click on the thumbnails for the bigger
Hopkinton State Park (Hopkinton, MA) was our destination for
the GONewEngland BBQ on August 19.
The weather forecasts were shaky up to Saturday night, but
Sunday turned out to be perfect! Bright, sunny, not too hot, not too
Left: Alison's daughter Alana wants to share a
Right: Martin took time out to clean up his blades.
Martin, Eric, and LeighAnn
This was the first time the entire GONewEngland Crew was able to get
together in one place since our 2nd Anniversary Party in Framingham, MA a
few years back. We checked, and it didn't break any security protocol.
Your GONewEngland Crew
Kathy Kelley, Ken Leonard, Alan Fajvan (and Superbear), Mascot Gizmo (and
Alison, Alana, and Gizmo (the GONewEngland Mascot)
Dan "The Pup", Jack, Jeff, Rick
Dan, Doug, Dave and Jeff getting in some v-ball
Eric, Alana (after a swim), and Pam. Shadow is there, too!
Carla and Jasper
The "een" Table: Cheryl, Pauline (front); Eileen
(middle); Colleen, Lisa (back)
Alana and Alison look on as Alan grazes. In the background are
LeighAnn, Kathy, Kair, [oops, insert name here---gee, I thought I talked to
everyone!], and Mark
Jack, Diane, Shadow, and Pam wwwaaaayyyyy at the top of the dam (left).
Then I caught up to 'em and got a shot of the lake.
We sure did chow down! Just about everyone brought a little to
share, so nobody went hungry. A bunch of us went out for a walk around
the lake. Alana and Alison even went in for a swim in the pond nearby.
I think Alana really enjoyed that! And, of course, Dan "The Pup"
brought his volleyball net, and that saw some use.
Not pictured this time include Barb, Livinia, Don, and probably a few
others. I'll get you guys next time.
It was a fun day for all!
(Well...ummm...apparently some people had more fun than others...:-) )
|CAMP/HIKE/BIKE/RAFTING WEEKEND -
Activity run by & Trip Report by Lenore H.
Photos by Dawn S.
There are more
photos available (for now--they will go away soon).
all; I know it has been many moons since we went on the floaty-thingys
on the fast water. Most of you have plum forgotten our times of high
adventure... murder and intrigue in the mountains of Massachusetts...
our brush with the law, due to rampant hooliganism... "a steady,
painful, tortuous climb" (I think that was the quote...). But for
those needing a reminder, here is my version of the trip. I will try
to keep the Lenore-ese to a minimum, for maximum readability.
So. After countless e-mails, in which we
finally determined who was bringing what (which was never totally
crystal clear but worked out in the end), we all mostly arrived at
Mohawk State Park on Friday night, August 19th. Except for Matt, who
was staying someplace betwix and between, and mysteriously showed up
at 6:00 the following morning. We chatted into the wee hours of the
morning that Friday night, until we were told to shush already by the
Saturday morning, Wayne whomped us up some
delightful omlettes (Dawn could smell the water boiling for coffee.
Curious). Discussion ensued re: where to hike that day. Winds blew in
the direction of Mt. Greylock for a time, but gradually shifted to
lower expectations closer to home. A map was consulted, which informed
us that the hike just a sneeze away from the campsite began with a
"steady, relentless climb" which we didn't believe, put down to
exaggeration, but no indeed-- it spoke truth. We spread out some. When
my crew reached the top, we had scattered a bit, but were quickly
reunited and began a tour of look-out points. We took many pictures of
us lolling about on rocks. We met a very friendly doggie at our first
stop. Friendly doggie disappeared for a time and was called by his
frantic human until he finally reappeared. We continued our quest for
the trail that would take us back to camp. Wayne led us on what we
thought might be a road back, but had us climbing rocks back to where
we came from. Just enough adventure for us, though. We took a long
break at another rock on the way back. A friendly kid chatted us up
for a time. "These gloves are too warm, but they match the outfit". Or
something like that. Kim gave him her bandana, and made a friend.
We schlepped back to camp, and took a dip
in the pond. Dana never got in past her knees. Dave K. went off on his
own, and we did not press him for details. We found the showers (note:
no quarters required), and then had a wonderful potluck dinner (Matt
has now learned the meaning of potluck. We actually helped luck along
a bit, but that was generally it.) Dawn had to move her tent down to
Wayne and Kim's site, because the park was very insistent that we have
only two tents on one site. Aside from that, we did well. Dave B.
provided marinated meat-type patties, Lenore chopped up veggies in
foil, Matt wrapped up some corn on the cob and tossed it in the fire,
Dawn supplemented the main course with spagetti (a camper's best
friend), and Dave K. topped the meal off with cheesecake (Wa-hoo!)
Feeling warm and friendly, we decided to
kill and lie to each other by playing Mafia. Poor Matt seemed to
always meet an untimely end. Dana said she would play "Just one
round", but warmed to the game when she became the Mafia. "A woman
would not have killed Matt first in the final game". That should have
been a clue. We got hassled by The Man pretty close to 10:00, so we
wrapped it up.
Sunday, we awoke early and broke down
camp. What a gorgeous day for whitewater rafting! Hot, sunny and dry.
We found the place without any problems, and also found our other
three add-ons. After our brief bus ride, we met our guides (whose
names I've forgotten-- anyone remember?) I remember I was put in the
front, because of my vast experience in whitewater rafting (Hah!). I
think our guide hit the highest waves on purpose. We were commended
for our ability to stick together and follow commands. What a blast we
had! Dodging huge sticky-uppy-thingys (rocks), spinning in quieter
water, "surfing", and plowing through huge, splashing waves. A bit too
much of "hurry up and wait", at times, but it extended the trip a bit.
We had fun, and didn't lose anybody... until we all voluntarily jumped
in the river ("Feet up... Do not stand up... float downstream...") The
water was a wee bit more than refreshing, but we dried off quickly.
Then the trip back, a slide show and BBQ, a group hug, and we were on
Thanks to all for making it a great trip!
We really must get together for Mafia again. I mentioned to some a
wonderful used bookstore near me. I'm sure it would be gorgeous in the
CARTER NOTCH HUT STAY - August 4-5
Activity run by and trip report by Tom S.
Photos from Jan and Don
Jim, Brian, Rae, Penny, Thien, Kathy, Naoe, Annette, Tom, Diane, Don and Jan
Sunday Morning in front of Carter Notch Hut, about to hike out
(Click on the image to see the full picture including more of the hut)
I've had some great outings over the years with The New England Hiking Group
and Get Outdoors New England, but Saturday's trip to Carter Notch hut was the
creme de la creme. Our group bonded early and worked unbelievably well
together. I couldn't imagine a better time.
Jan, Naoe, Annette and I rode up to Pinkham Notch early, where we met Thien.
We ate breakfast, and Thien confirmed his plan to hike to the hut from
Pinkham Notch, over Wildcat Ridge and Wildcat's five peaks.
We left him gearing up and drove to the trailhead. The four of us hiked up
Nineteenmile Brook Trail with Don and Kathy, and Brian, Rae and Penny soon
The quote of the day came from Annette. Basically, she's been hiking since
last November and almost all her White Mountain hiking has been on snowshoes.
Six feet of snow makes for a nice smooth trail. She was horrified at the
condition of Nineteenmile Brook Trail. "Where did all these rocks and roots
come from?" she demanded. We tried to assure her that they were there all
along, hidden under six plus feet of snow. She wasn't convinced. "What," she
said. "You trying to tell me that the Mount Tom Trail has rocks and roots,
too? What about the Lonesome Lake Trail?" It was sad to see, really, almost
like watching a child learn that there's no Santa Claus.
We got to the hut and staked out our bunks. I decided to climb Wildcat from
the Notch to meet Thien, but before I could get my pack on, he walked up to
the hut. He did more trail mileage with twice the elevation in about the same
time as us. He got the runner-up award for quote of the day. When told that
all the lower bunks were claimed and that he had to have an upper one, he
shot back, "No problem, though I ought to warn you that I tend to wet the
We spent the afternoon playing on the dump-truck sized rocks that form the
Ramparts. There was a contest to see who went highest. I came in second. Not
too bad, eh? Poor Naoe, who thought she was so good, finished next to last.
(EDITOR'S NOTE: The contest was between the two of them. Figure it out.)
Just before dinner, Diane and Jim showed up. They had hiked up the Imp Trail,
up and over the Carters, Hight and Carter Dome. Diane had a knee brace. It
was her first hike since knee surgery. Remind me to never try to keep up with
her! She had made her own reservation at the hut, but joined us for dinner
Jim and I are horrified. We both showed up for dinner wearing the same
T-shirt (red EMS polypro). Here we stare at each other, unable to believe the
enormity of our faux pas. I've never been so embarrassed in my life. Kathy,
Annette, Diane and Thien pretend not to notice as someone from another group
shields himself from potential fireworks.
We had chicken tenders, rice and corn, and packed away an incredible amount
of food. I always said that the key to a successful dinner party is to make
your dinner guests climb a mountain before dinner. Afterwards, we sat around
the tables and swapped hiking tales.
I'd planned the trip around a full moon, but clouds rolled in, and later
rain. The full moon partially shone through the clouds, making them seem
translucent in places. We had the pleasure of sitting on our porch, looking
DOWN on lightning flashes in the valley towards Maine.
Sunday morning it was up for breakfast. Ham, pancakes, Tang, coffee and tea.
We said goodbye to Diane and Jim, who were going down Nineteenmile Brook
Trail, and we headed up the Carter Dome Trail. Annette failed to drink enough
water early on and suffered from dehydration. Thien (Mr. Legs of Steel)
carried her pack for a mile or so until she got her legs back. The views from
Carter Dome (4832') were good, but the bare summit of Mt Hight provided a 360
degree panorama that was awesome. In spite of the heat and humidity, the air
was clear. We could see cars on the Mount Washington Auto Road.
From then on it was downhill all the way. We split up at the trailhead with
promises to all get together for another one of these sometime.
Annette, Naoe, Jan, Kathy and I stopped to eat at my favorite post-hike spot,
the White Lake Pizza and Sub Shop in Tamworth, on Route 16 just north of the
Route 25 junction. People often ask me why I sponsor these GONE events. I can
only point to the picture of that meal: me sitting at a picnic table, a large
steak bomb sub with extra hots on a plate in front of me, basking in the
company of four exceptionally cute hiker babes.
It just doesn't get better than that!
|PAWTUCKAWAY RING DIKE HIKE - Raymond, NH - August 4
Activity run by Bob K.
I've always said that one of the reasons GONewEngland was started was so
that people could learn something about the outdoors. Bob K.
discovered that Pawtuckaway State Park, where we've been several times, is
really the remains of an ancient volcano. Viewing the map (among other
materials Bob provided us), one could easily see the circle of mountains in
the area---the remains of a real volcano scraped almost clean by the glacial
flows of the ice ages.
Egads! A volcano in southern NH! Would our hike have a fiery
end? No, not likely. But it did have a buggy one!
Your Webmaster, Joe, Mark, Linda, Christine, Diane,
Pam, Victor, Bob
Pawtuckaway is HUGE. I mean like 5,000 acres. There are miles
of roads and trails, many ponds, a large lake, three mountains (although less than
1000' each), interesting rock formations, a beautiful hemlock grove, and a
spooky boulder field which must be seen to be believed.
And mosquitoes. And lots of 'em.
And other fauna
like the big dragonfly which landed on Joe, a friendly frog hopping around
in the heavy, wet underbrush, and red efts, which appear to be having a
second season with all the warm, muggy weather and rain---they were
scampering all over the trails.
||Our first destination was the middle mountain. On our way
there we got to learn about the old house where the person working the
fire tower used to live. It's now just a cellar hole, but out
back is an old cemetery, of which there are several in the Park.
Great spot at the far end of the middle mountain
Unfortunately on our way up the mountain Diane had to
turn back. It was hot and humid, and the vegetation was quite
dense, so her allergies weren't going to let her have a good hike.
She made the right decision, and she and Christine headed back.
I hope you're doing better, Diane!
Next stop: The south peak and the fire tower!
A quick jaunt up the south mountain and we were at the base
of the fire tower. Of course we had to head up! It was open, and
we chatted with the person working in there. It's possible to see all
the way to Boston, but our vision was hampered by the clouds and haze.
Still, it's a great view. In the picture above Linda is looking in the
direction of Pawtuckaway Lake.
For Pam: The Uncanoonucs
We decided to relax at the fire tower for a while and chow down
Your Webmaster found some shade---it was hot when the sun broke
through those clouds!
From the fire tower we wandered across the south peak's ridge and down to
Round Pond, passing an old sawmill dam along the way, another feature which
Bob pointed out.
From there we took a trail I'd seen but never managed to get
to. The way had always been blocked by water, but Bob knew how to get
around the water and onto the trail. This trail was incredible!
It led to the Boulder Field from a different direction than I'd been before,
and it showed that there's a whole other section to the Boulder Field.
We wandered in, and a wall towered on the left, and there was another hill
on the right with large trees and smaller boulders. From there we
wandered on up to the part of the Boulder Field which is more familiar to
me...and much more spooky.
From there it was on to our final destination: the top
of the north mountain. We wandered past another pond (I turned around
and snapped a photo
and past the Devil's Den (we didn't stop to check it out this time to see
the cave and the weird iridescent fungus---it was just too buggy) as we made
our way up the north mountain.
||A grove of hemlock greets you at one end of the north mountain.
It's something to see!
A short time later we were standing at the top
of Mt. Pawtuckaway (the north mountain).
It was the end of the line for Bob, who had to leave a little early to
visit his father in the hospital (hope he's doing well, Bob!!!). The
rest of us made it across the ridge to the wonderful vista to the south (the
spot where we traditionally had lunch in the past).
Here Mark and Victor pose for a shot. Then it was down the other side
and back along the floor of the old volcano and back to the cars.
A pond peeks through the trees
Peaks, ponds, red efts, bugs, cemeteries, views, rocks,
cellar holes, fire towers, streams, old mill sites, hemlock...And that's
only the "back part" of Pawtuckaway!
Thanks for a fun day, Bob!
Historical Music Performances
|Province Lake Weekend - August 3-5
Activity, Trip Report, Pictures: Jack Layton
I arrived late in the afternoon on Aug 3 to prep the cottage. Soon I was
greeting Jim and Judith, Mike B., and Dave K. Dan "the Pup" L. showed
up later in the evening after zigging when he should have zagged.
The weather was excellent the entire weekend, warm and sunny, with
Saturday was spent on the water as people took their turns in the tube. I
did my best trying to provide an exciting ride, tossing them over waves that
made whitewater rafting seem like a day relaxing by the pool! Mike and Dave
took a couple rides each, and late arrival Christiane got a turn too. Ashish
and Sarah showed up late Saturday a.m., and Sarah got in a run water-skiing.
All were impressed by her slalom skills which ended with a perfectly timed
stop inches from the dock.
Lunch was a feast of hot dogs from the grill, with every topping
imaginable! Jim cooked up a batch of chili (the ultimate dog condiment)
which was accompanied by onion, relish, mustard, cheese, and of
course...Tabasco sauce! Everyone raised their cholesterol levels a few
points before heading back to the water.
Mike brought a canoe which became a popular attraction, and, of course,
the tubing continued. Dan was my able co-captain as riders were tossed and
Evening brought the famous GONewEngland pot-luck dinner. Ashish put up a
hammock and got Sarah to test it out. Mike brought enough stir fry veggies
to feed an army, and they were delicious! Dan treated us to grilled potatoes
and steak! Dave spoiled us all with an ice-cream dessert that would appease
There was also good conversation on the patio, with Dave telling us of
his trips to Russia and Africa. Later on some of us got into a lengthy gab
session in the boat, which was held under a starlit night on perfectly calm
water. No wonder it lasted until late night/early morning!
I hear Sunday morning there was a great breakfast. Later on we were back
on the lake with people canoeing and tubing. In the afternoon it was time
for folks to head their separate ways. All in all it was a great weekend-
new faces, old faces, great food, great people, great weather-and a resolve
to come back to do it again next year!
This photo is called "Cure".
Ummm...No, I have no idea what it's about, either. :-) ...kl...