7/31, Day 93, Tom Leonard Camp to Upper Goose Pond, 21.1 miles
We slept well even with our tent hanging down towards ravine and the neighboring tent was so close that the campers hung their food over our tent. We were not concerned because the bear would have had to do a balancing act over the ravine to get to the food. Actually, there are not many bears in the Berkshires where we hike.
Hiking up from the campsite we immediately had to navigate through squeezer rocks, then we reached Ice Ravine, a deep dark beautiful ravine. We then climbed up to Benedict Pond with a nature trail, then up some more to The Ledges where we could see to the Catskills.
Fauna has been small rather than deer or bears: tan peeper frogs smaller than a dime, larger frogs and toads who should eat more mosquitoes, tiny red salamanders and a sage hen type bird. The bird songs, calls, cheeps and peeps keep us entertained. Several times we have heard a nest of young birds frantically calling for food and then the competition cries when a parent returns to the nest with food. Birds are the reward for hiking in a dense forest, our ears are continually entertained.
Ponds are so large that we would call them lakes. At the end of the day we walked around Upper Goose Pond. We haven’t seen many lake areas on the AT and this trail was a beautiful change with us walking on the rocky shoreline. We chose the tent platform highest from the water, though, to get away from mosquitoes and humidity (good theory, not much difference). We zip the tent shut and can still hear the whine. The sound is white noise that puts us to sleep in 30 seconds.