Lake Purdy (again!)

A hike for Whiskey and the girldog (Lucy).

It was very hard to get both dogs to stay still long enough to snap a picture of their faces!

Whiskey and Lucy get along great and I’m glad she can keep up! She makes Whiskey look fat though. “Does this GSD make my butt look fat?”

Whiskey and Lucy explore together.

The strangest thing about this hike (other than the dead deer Brooke and I found shoved down a ten foot drainage gutter (bricked in along the sides, looks like a chimney, must go down to a sewer?) was emptying out unexpectedly from the woods into an abandoned road system.

Everyone tries to figure out what we stumbled upon (into?).

...the abandoned road..

After several searches and calls home, we figured out we were here: Google Maps Image Sorry I don’t know how to save an image of the map, but I’m learning! I’m sure I’ll figure it out. I did just figure out how to link you to our exact location, so hey, I’m proud of myself!

Anyway, in that link you’ll see a street view of a blue gate. All beyond that gate is the rest of that street (Stonebrook Drive, Leeds) as well as two side streets. All grown up and abandoned. Were there ever houses out there? Or was it a subdivision that was started and named but never finished. So incredibly odd.

And then serendipitously I realized that scanning a little to the right revealed a horse farm, which I contacted and who gives lessons. This is on my to do list for the new year. Thank you fate!

Stranger things have happened than stumbling across an old abandoned road, such as oh, I don’t know… stumbling across an old abandoned airport area. Lake Purdy you sure do have your secrets.

The trail is excellent in the winter and is a single track in most places. To get where we got, you’d go up the paved road and when you pass through the old abandoned gates you stay left at the next split instead of right towards the old cemetery/airport. Stay straight on this main trail. Much further down when you are tightly in the woods you will come to a split and we went on the trail to the right.

Brooke and Lucy in the woods section of the trail

I do not think there were any other major splits but it’s been several weeks since we last hiked this (the holiday season has me way behind in posts…) soo….. if I tell you wrong and you get lost forever, just remember I do not advocate anyone going out in the woods without A) telling someone exactly where they’ll be and B) using a gps if possible. We have a “tracker” function on my phone where my husband can pinpoint (well, mostly) my location (er, location of my phone… but I try not to think of that) at any time during a hike. Plus, if you suck at keeping track of trails, mark them somehow alright? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been with someone who swore “that’s the trail.” I usually stand firm on “no you’re wrong” because I don’t enjoy getting lost. But I’ve had the “joy” occasionally with hiking with groups of people who I don’t know, or I don’t hold in high esteem and I’ll humor them and let them go that way if for no other reason to shut them up once they realize they were wrong about what trail we came in or out on. Then we can turn around and go home, usually to confused cries of “but I was just sure we’d passed that -rock, tree, garden gnome, etc.- before.” That being said I’ll go out tomorrow and get lost in the woods lol. It can happen to anyone, even the most experienced hiker unfortunately.

So I’ll confess though that I have been lost in the woods. Once. At around 12, with a large group of girls in my hometown. We had to walk miles until we finally broke out of the deep woods and were miles from home. Had to walk muddy up to a nice modular home who had a jaccuzzi like tub and let us all get cleaned up before someone came to get us. I remember we totally wrecked their nice bathroom. Covered it head to toe in our mud and muck. But it sure was fun!

In the hours before we emerged I saw girls reduced to tears freaking out that we were going to die in the woods. The howling packs of wild dogs in the woods did nothing to dampen our enthusiastic imaginations… I felt lucky to have kept my head and kept walking, keeping a sense of direction until we burst into the clearing. I don’t remember how many girls were there that day (6? 7?) or every name of every girl but I do remember distinctly that it was basically me and one other girl who led us to safety and kept the weeping and death wailing to a minimum. The experience was harrowing and could have certainly gone badly for us if we hadn’t gotten out by dark (by the way, we barely made that deadline as it was pitch dark by the time family came to get us). But it was educational in a way that I can hardly describe.

So here’s to compasses, maps, gps, phone tracking devices, and girls who don’t cry in the woods. Wait, that’s good enough to be a toast! Cheers!

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