Sunday, June 29, 2008

Sizerville Nature Trail - May 24, 2008

We are on the trail of a new spot for our harvest hike. After our Susquehannock disaster I thought I would be proactive and explore several possibilities to ensure success. I figured if I was ever to get my family to follow me back into the woods I would have to have some credibility. Janette was brave enough to accompany me on this first excursion into the unknown.

I chose the Sizerville nature trail, located in the Elk state forest adjacent to the Sizerville state park. It was fairly short (three miles) and well marked, at least on the map.

Janette and I arrived fairly early on Saturday morning. The weather was cool but had the promise of a warm day even for May. We headed up a dug road off the parking area. The grade was fairly easy but got steeper as we neared the top of the Hill. The road was crossed by many small spring and the trees were festooned with large grape vines that were thicker than my arms.

The Map is marked with several scenic overlooks but we were unable to locate them. There are numbered posts every hundred feet or so. We assumed someone had a guide that went with them, probably available at the park ranger’s office. Large rock outcrops litter the top and the dug road turns into a more traditional hiking trail. This gave me a moment of Déjà vu to the point of hesitation. The continuation of the numbered post gave us the confidence to carry on.

The trail off the hill ran much steeper than the ascent. Footing was tricky and the fatigue of the climb up made the decent quite difficult. The trail was bordered by a picturesque stream that made the treacherous trek worthwhile. Our consensus was that if we chose this trail for our hike we should start on the more difficult end.

The foot trail turned back into dug road and continued to the parking area. It was a good hike and would seem to be quite acceptable for our fall hike.


Although the hike seemed quite uneventful Janette did manage to pick up a couple of deer ticks. She found one without getting bit the other was able to successfully attach itself to her. We captured both and stored them in the freezer in case they were needed later for testing. To date she has suffered no ill effects and has not exhibited the signs associated with lymes disease. We will be adding repellent to our “Adventure bag” for use in the future expeditions.

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