Everyone in the restaurant was very happy and chipper and full of kindness and smiles. Coffee came straight away and I had the Fathers Day Special -- 2 eggs, home fries and toast, with a steak. Nana had Eggs Benedict and we split a half a Belgian Waffle with apples as an added Father's Day bonus treat. Mmmmmm. Food and service was excellent, and they even got my toast right, always the sign of a great place. Once done and paid, we plugged in the directions to Mashamoquet Brook State Park in Pomfret, Connecticut about a half our further down the road. We found it easily and were just a little surprised that they had an entrance fee of $15 which seems a little steep but as it turns out it was worth it and we have since learned of another parking area that is free. See the map below.
|Nana and Pappa|
We decided to walk the blue dot trail which seems to circumnavigate the perimeter of the park and my app said that it was about four and a half miles long. From where we parked we immediately started to climb and soon came to the Blue Dot trail which would be our trail around the park. This trail is very well marked and a relatively easy trail despite the nearly 700 feet of elevation gain and loss long the way. I, of course, did a lot of huffing and puffing along these steeper slopes but that has a lot more to do with my condition than it does with the trail. And let me comment here on what a good job the state of CT has done on maintaining these trails, they are wide and very well marked with signage and maps at every intersection. There are several features marked out on the trail map that we enjoyed along the way. The Wolf's Den was a great out cropping of stone and the Indian chair was a naturally broken rock that was the exact size and shape so it could be used to overlook a high bluff.
|Nana in Indian Chair|
Nana started to take my picture and didn't realize immediately that there was a sheer drop off behind her..she doesn't have a good appreciation for heights and sheer drop offs. She discovered he error in time and we had a good laugh. An amazing natural stone. These features were about half way through our walk and as we continued on the trail we met a few people - another couple our age who were walking their dog and a father and his two sons (who didn't look like they wanted to be hiking) and a young lady walking her dog. It is always nice to meet people along a trail as most everyone seems open and friendly, at least that has been our experience so far. It was some time after this that I realized that this walk was going to be a bit farther that was advertised but it was a beautiful day and we did not have a schedule so it didn't matter but I was beginning to get tired, but we had plenty of water and I slowed the pace, especially on those uphill slogs and it turned out just fine. We met up with the young lady and her dog once again and chatted for a while,she was very friendly and commented on my hiking stick. She was walking with two nordic sticks. The chat was just long enough for me to get fully recovered from the last uphill. Thanks unknown lady. It was only about a mile back to the car from there and as we neared the end of the Blue Dot trail it got wide and flattened out until the final downhill back to the brook and to the parking area. My app said it was 6.6 miles, which was wrong as other (smarter?) apps told us -- it was really just about six miles. More pictures below. . .
|Projectile Sweating - hot Pappa|
|Nana on an uphill|
|Steep stuff around here|
|Map with free parking marked|