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Monday, September 22, 2014

Indian Ladder Farms/ Wolf Creek Falls/ Partridge Run WMA(Helderburgs)

Visited Indian Ladder Farms in Altamont on a rather cool, breezy and cloudy day.  There were plenty of other people visiting the farm store and petting area as we arrived in the late morning.
The weather actually seemed fitting as summer gives way to fall and the harvest. 
 Mini apples!
 We browsed the farm store for a bit and even saw a bee observation hive.  There were plenty of delicious food options ranging from organic jellies, locally made maple syrup, honey, cider and of course apples just to name a few.  After going back outside, we followed the fields along the orchards to the Nature Trail.
 A solo tree ablaze in color.
 Busy bee.
 The Nature Trail is actually several assorted paths that meander through open fields and peaceful woods.
 The sun made a few attempts to come out and made it much warmer when it did make an appearance.
A panorama of the clearing skies and open fields along the trail.  
 Harvesting basket near the orchards.
 Apples look good to be picked.
 Farm scene.
 Climbing up to "Mount Mac" picnic area, provides a splendid view of the Helderburg Escarpment.
 Several picnic tables can be found amongst the pines on Mount Mac.
 After finishing the nature trail, we arrived back at the petting zoo and fed some of the goats. 
 The goats were very friendly after they realized we had food.
 An old antique tractor greets visitors.
 A fun day at the orchard!
 The petting zoo extends to another area where there are more sheep and goats as well as Highland Cattle.  They are a Scottish breed of cattle with long horns and long wavy coats.
 He wasn't very interested in us.
As we got ready to leave it began to lightly rain again.  There is much to see and do at Indian Ladder Farms and can be fun for the whole family.
 After leaving Kalli, who had to go to work, I visited nearby Wolf Creek Falls, a Mohawk Hudson Land Conservancy Property located just outside of Altamont in the town of Knox.  The 135 acre preserve is fairly new, gifted to the Conservancy in 2007.
 There are numerous stone walls throughout the property.
 Many leaves underfoot along the trail.
 Colors are exploding in the hilltowns.
 Wolf Creek, the centerpiece of the preserve, is very low this time of year, making a creek crossing very easy.
 Below the falls on Wolf Creek.
 The Long Path intersects and follows some of Wolf Creek's trails.
 All dried up Wolf Creek.
Vibrant fall colors.
 There are trails found on each side of the highway, but due to it being a very rural area, traffic is usually low.
A quiet stretch of trail near the edge of the property.
 Another stone wall.
 Quiet woods.  Walked about a mile and a half at Wolf Creek Falls before arriving back at the car.
 Continued through rural Albany County to Partridge Run Wildlife Management Area, about 4500 acres of preserved land in the town of Berne.  The main feature of Partridge Run is the numerous, quiet and beautiful ponds.  Some are easy to access while others can be more difficult to find, but finding them is indeed, half the fun. Here is a pretty tree decked out in fall colors along gravel Fawn Lake Road.
 A pretty beaver pond along the way to Fawn Lake.
 Clouds breaking up?  No, it was not meant to be.  Stayed cool and breezy with temps dropping down to 49 with wind chills even colder.
 Beautiful waters of Fawn Lake.
 Fire red colors near Fawn Lake's dam.
 Fawn Lake Road
 White Birch Pond can be accessed via a small, one lane woods road or by hiking in about half a mile on the Long Path from Fawn Lake.
 White Birch Pond, located at an elevation of about 1600 feet, is really showing nice fall foliage.
It is clear that autumn, which officially starts tomorrow, is off to a head start at these higher elevations of the Albany Hilltowns.  A very pretty, yet cool day.

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