Although the weathermen predicted only a 20% chance of rain, we started out the hike from the Tillotson Road in Eden at around 9:30 in a bit of a mist, which turned into somewhat larger droplets that could indeed be called “rain.” The enthusiasm of the group was high, however, and we were not going to be deterred from proceeding upward on the Frank Post Trail. We traveled 2 miles up the trail and reached the Tillotson Camp in about an hour, and had a great view of the fog! Within the dry confines of the camp, we discussed the possibility of turning back, but again, the group’s enthusiasm pushed us onward!
We joined the Long Trail just beyond the camp, and continued south along the ridge for 2.8 miles to the junction with the Foresters Trail. Along the way we saw a beautiful spider’s web bejeweled by the precipitation. We also saw many piles of moose droppings, and a few very large hoof prints. We reached the trail junction by about noon, and proceeded up the last .2 mile stretch to the summit of Belvidere Mountain, where we were greeted with a beautiful view—of fog! Nevertheless, we settled in for lunch, after which a few intrepid souls climbed the tower. The fog did thin for a bit, allowing us to get some fleeting views of the immediate base of the mountain, the tailings from the asbestos mine, and the surrounding area.
The 2.9 mile trip down on the Foresters Trail went fairly smoothly, although footing was occasionally tricky on the wet rocks. The trail was well marked with new blue blazes. About half way down, we noticed bear markings that decorated a beech tree close to the trail. We finished the hike, crossing several streams and some good sized patches of mud, which provided “evidence” (on our legs) of our endeavors! We were back at our cars by about 3:00.
Après hike refreshments came in the way of multi-flavored ice cream at the colorful corner store in Johnson. We returned to the Jericho Elementary School where we had dropped some cars in the morning about 4:30 — just as the sun broke through!