We did another official trail hike, but first – the pink picture of the day! My new biking jacket. It is super bright 😀
On to the hike! On Monday, my sister and BIL had the day off since they are state employees. I was working, but managed to take off in the afternoon so John and I could join them on the hike. The trail we went on was Spruce Mountain. This trail was finally finished after getting some easements to make the trail passable all the way to the fire tower. The firetower was in disrepair for many years, but they just finished the restoration so that you can climb up the 5 (!!!) stories to get to the top. The trail closes by mid October for hunting season, so there are only a couple weeks left to go.
Apparently,we were not the only ones who wanted to squeeze in a holiday hike. We were pretty surprised at the number of cars at the trail head.
It actually wasn’t super crowded on the trail and it seemed most people were on their way down when we started up.
Since there were easements, instructions were to stay on the paths. Some property owner put this up by a section:
Okay, then. The trail was pretty much all wooded on the way up and mostly just forest floor instead of the rocky climbs we have done before.
Check out how this tree perfectly fell into the V of two other trees.
Talk about threading the needle. We had to duck a little bit under this tree.
You could almost make 2 canoes out of this split tree:
Woodpecker damage on an old stump:
This trail pretty much kept climbing upwards for the whole 1.2 miles to get to the firetower. It definitely got the heart rate up there! We did have Gryffon with us again on this hike, so we took breaks for him (and us!).
He’s so special he has his own collapsible, portable water bowl!
More and more climbing and we started to enter a different landscape:
Yippee!! We finally saw our destination:
I have to say the thought of climbing this made me a little nervous. I am not a fan of heights, but I didn’t hike 1.2 miles up a mountain not to get to the top!
Gryffon didn’t get to go up in the tower. He was attached to a tree while we climbed:
There were only a few people there, thank goodness. It would have been hard to get up and down if we had been there earlier with all the people we saw coming down. Good thing I was busy at work in the morning and delayed the hike 😉
The fire tower was originally built in 1928 (there I go with my favorite time period). Thank goodness they refurbished it… Colleen and Dave climbing:
The view was getting better with each floor up:
Colleen says “Lean out of the tower!”. She wanted our picture from above. Eek! Not too far. (This was her picture).
These actually were out of order as John and I climbed first and she took these when we were on our way down, but I wanted to save the view shots for last.
Higher and it was a loooong way down. Look at the tiny people below:
It was a little scary, I have to admit, but the view was incredible. This is at the very top. There is a plexiglass enclosure so you don’t fall out, I guess, although the floors on the way up are wide open.
You can see for 120 miles from up here and are the colors not amazing?!!?!
We made it!! Top of the world!
Interesting note. Selfie was done on my phone. You can see the difference how the phone does not pick up the fall colors like the Rebel does.
We really picked the perfect day to go to see colors. I just could not get over this view. Here is the shadow of the firetower while we were up top:
This was definitely worth the climb up. Going down was pretty much all downhill and fast (relatively for hiking). I took a few more pictures, but they just can’t compare to the fire tower shots LOL. It was about 2.5 miles round trip for this hike. I do recommend this one for sure. Several days later and I keep thinking about the view from the fire tower.