Moss Rock has enough trails to keep you occupied on short hikes for several weekends in a row. There are 250 acres of trails and rocks to go bouldering on. There are lots of unmapped trails sprouting off here and there for you to explore. We fell prey to at least two of them so make sure you bring your map if it’s your first time there. You’ll need it.
Overall we had a great time. Whiskey loves the two dogs he traveled with and while he’s still doing a lot of puppish darting and stopping he is doing well, I think, at hiking. His stamina is always strong at the beginning but on the way back he was a tired dog. He hung back with Chance, an older golden who seemed well matched with Whiskey. Consensus is that Whiskey’s endurance on the trail will pick up when we’ve got more hiking under our proverbial belt and once it gets cooler. He spent a good deal of time standing like a cow in the water to cool off. Note the backpack! His first day with it went well. However, when fitting it at the house he took the pack very seriously, but when I tried to put it on him before the hike he bucked and reared and fought me tooth and nail not to make him carry his own water. Then once it was on he was like “oh, that’s all? I can do that no problem!” Dogs.
I was a bit wistful about the idea of climbing on the rocks but felt I couldn’t with the dog attached to my left hand. I seriously considered letting him off the leash but then imagined my husbands face when I told him I’d lost Whiskey and decided against it. That time will come (for the off leash, not the losing) eventually. I’ll just have to drag a non climber back with me to hold Whiskey, and I’ll also have to park right outside the boulder field! That hike had me quite tuckered out. I had to make Whiskey slow down just for me a few times on the way up (insert sheepish grin here). But he seemed to forgive me for it.
To clarify the path we were on (white trail from Simmons parking lot) was not steep or strenuous. But we kept a faster pace than my short legs were used to. I’m the “oh look there’s a flower..” (pause, smell the flower, sigh, slowly move on) type. I do this several times in an hour. I also often pull out a book to consult on what type of flower, bird, reptilian creature I just spotted so that I can identify it correctly. I hope to go back next week and sort of putter around like this.
Sunrise to Sunset Dogs must be on a leash no longer than six feet and under personal control at all times
Links to various details you might find interesting!:
Main Hoover site
Moss Rock Festival Is coming up November 6-7! Hope you can make it. I’ve never been able to go. Trying to find out if dogs are allowed…
Botanical Gardens pdf document about the various plants and animals you can find at Moss Rock.
Read some history about Moss Rock Preserve. I especially like the part about an old moonshine still found on the site! No wonder Whiskey felt right at home.
Hoover’s website provides various ways to get to the different parking lots.
Overall Score: 7 tail wags out of 10