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Monday, January 30, 2012

Stratham Hill Park and Lylah's Lost Mitten

The sun was out this past weekend and we didn't want to pass up the blue skies, so we headed over to Stratham Hill Park. Stratham Hill Park is one of our favorite, local places to meander around the woods. It has light grades and well groomed trails. Most of all, it's close by. It was the perfect spot to bring Lylah on her first "winter" hike as well as try out our new Kelty FC 3.0 child carrier backpack.

Me and the munchkin sporting our new Kelty FC 3.0 Child Carrier Pack!

We arrived mid morning and found the wind was blowing a bit. So we snuggled Lylah up in some warm clothes, mittens, hat and some cool shades. The pack wasn't bad but will definitely take some getting used too. I hope to have a gear review out soon on this product.

Kitty Rock Trail, Ice Covered Unfortunately

We first headed over to ascend the hill using the Tuck Trail, but found the trail covered over with hard, glossy ice. I'm assuming this was a product of the day of rain we received earlier in the week. Since we didn't bring any traction, nor did I feel comfortable walking on anything "risky" with the baby on my back, we opted to head up the back side of the hill via the Kitty Rock Trail, which has lesser grades. However, upon reaching the trailhead, we found the same icy conditions. 

Wood Duck houses which have been put up fairly recently

So we continued south to meet up with the Old Tote Road. I noticed on the walk there, someone had put up wood duck houses along the ponds and runoffs, which I like to see. When we reached the Old Tote Road, we found some icy conditions so we walked along a field, which ran parallel to the Old Tote Road. There, we found many people walking their dogs and playing in the sun.

Field parallel to the Old Tote Road. People in the distance playing with their dogs.

 
Old Farm Equipment in the field near the Old Tote Road trailhead

We walked for a bit and found a place where we could cut back into the Old Tote Road. At the junction ahead, we took a left and headed over the bridge which goes over the runoff for Stratham Hill Pond. We then took another left and headed down a trail which traverses the banks between two small ponds. It was a pretty cool trail.

Trail which traversed the banks of two ponds...pretty neat!

From here, it was starting to get a bit nippy, so we decided to head back to the truck. But then, we saw it...one of Lylah's mittens on the ground. Jill checked her out and it seemed she had thrown both of them, but we had no clue where the second one was. So, we retraced our steps in full, doing the whole loop again. Unfortunately we didn't find it on the trail. Back at the truck, I pulled Lylah out of the pack and her second mitten flew out. Apparently she was just hiding it.

It was a short walk in the woods and unfortunately for us, we couldn't make it to the top of Stratham Hill due to ice. However, we still had a great time. Lylah smiled from ear-to-ear while in the pack. I think she really enjoyed it. I can't wait until we get some decent snow in the region so we can bring her snowshoeing!



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12 comments:

  1. It sounds like your daughter likes the cold weather if she is throwing away mittens! Nice first winter hike!

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    1. Grant, no kidding. Here little fingers were definitely cold when we got back to the truck. We'll have to get mittens that button to her jacket or have strings that go across so she doesn't loose them again!
      Karl

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  2. Hey Karl,
    Nice report, and very cute story about the lost mitten. It brings to mind the Mother Goose nursery rhyme about the "Three Little Kittens" who lost their mittens. As in the fairy tale, was Lylah rewarded with some pie upon finding the lost mitten? :)

    John

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    Replies
    1. Hi John, no, no pie. But she did get to have some pieces of soft carrots and baby puffs when she got home. Right now...with her limited palette, I'm sure they were as good as pie!

      Karl

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  3. Karl, nice that you were able to get out with your wife and daughter! I like the picture of the trail between the two ponds --- it does look pretty neat!

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    1. Hi Owen, Thanks! It was, almost like a mini ridge walk really. I can't wait to get out that way in the snow. I've been up and around the area with the snow shoes, but never on that trail.

      Karl

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  4. What a fun little hike! I remember those days of putting the children in carriers like that; your post brings back a lot of memories.

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    1. Hi Summerset, I'm glad the post brought back some good memories for you. The pack is definitely awkward on me right now. I'm not sure I like how it fits, but I figure it's only temporary for a few years. I'll get used to it. Do you recall getting used to yours?

      Karl

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  5. Looks like a nice first winter hike for Lylah.
    I'm probably dating myself but when we were little our mittens were attached to each other with yarn/string so they wouldn't get lost.

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    1. Hi Gary! I think they still have mittens like that. I'd like to get her some. Her's are very small, infant mittens that don't even have thumbs. I'm not sure if they make the strings for those ones. If they do, we have to get some!

      Karl

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  6. I just posted on my FB page how impressed I was to see people hiking with small kids in Patagonia. Good for you!

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  7. Looks like a great time out! Thankfully this winter has been pretty mild. Congrats to you and your wife for getting the little one out for a bit (and yourselves).

    Love the pic of the trail between the ponds. That's pretty cool.

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