Cranberry Wilderness Jaunt

Joined
Sep 22, 2003
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I'll add the pics as I can today:thumbup:

Left Friday AM with my friends Bill and Patty for a 3 day 2 night hike in the Cranberry Wilderness.

We got there at 2:45 pm and began the 7 mile hike down the North Fork of the Cranberry Trail.

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Was a warm day.

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I used to hike this trail back in the mid 80's and it was more like a road, but now since it's wilderness all the flash floods and stuff have made it much more rustic.

A few places the trail has to veer way uphill to avoid places where flooding totally washed out the banks and trail like here:

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We used to walk across this bridge but now you must scramble down the foundation:
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Then thru the washouts and blowdowns and up the other bank:
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Patty negotiating a washout and a blowdown of the trail at the same time.
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More in a bit!
 
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Sep 22, 2003
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Finally about 6pm we finished out the 7 miles and set up camp at a scenic spot on the river
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This was the maiden voyage for my Golite Hex 3. We got no rain so can't tell you about that aspect but as far as roomy light and easy to set up it was great.:thumbup:

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Dry month so a campfire was easy
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Sep 22, 2003
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The next morning we fired up some coffee on the zip stove and prepared for the endurance test. This would be our longest and toughest day.

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But before we left camp- Help me here- I think I FINALLY ID'd some Tinder fungus? I'm pretty sure this is it??? Anybody??

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Dec 17, 2005
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Sorry HD, that's not tinder fungus.........

That was Brian using the woods as his personal toilet again.:D
 
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Anyway we broke camp and walked out of the Wilderness. In Cranberry you have the designated Wilderness and then you have the Back Country. On this trip we were in both.

FR 76/102 are gated off gravel roads that run along the Cranberry River. Mountain Bikers, horse riders, and fishermen come in and there's shelters you can sleep in all along that part of the river.

We needed to walk about a mile of the gravel road before we could pick up the trail that would take us over the mountain.

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Even though this is somewhat "civilized" it's still a real pretty area. We've only had rain once this month and all of the streams are pretty dry.
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Finally we came to the Tumbling Rock Trail. But before we made the climb we hung out a bit at the Tumbling Rock Shelter. These are neat little shelters. They have even built little pit toilets by them now.

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Some yarrow and bee balm growing on the banks of the cranberry:
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Another shot of the river bank by the shelter

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Evening Primrose
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Sweet Fire ring at the shelter with removable grate:
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One last shelter shot
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Aug 26, 2006
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looks like a great trip, beautiful area. i look forward to seeing the rest.
 
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Feb 2, 2008
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That looks like a very pleasant journey with some good friends. Thanks for the pics; I really like the campsite by the river.
 
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Sep 22, 2003
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Soon we headed up tumbling rock. It's only 2.5 miles long but it has about 1000 feet of elevation gain and there's a lot of steep sections and blowdown climbing:
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Saw this little toothed fungi,I think this one is Hericium americanum:
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Sep 22, 2003
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There's this one little pleasant crossing space that is the perfect lunch spot.

Last time I was there 2 years ago it had rained the week before and it was really loud with the bubbling of the brook, but it was only bubbling a little. We broke out the home made pesto that Bill made with his own basil and garlic, some goat milk feta in olive oil, garlic and dill I made and some other store bought stuff.

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And chilling for a bit without the packs on:
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I told Bill and Patti to strike an "explorer staring into the distance" pose for this pic in front of a particularly large tree:
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Sep 22, 2003
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That last pic was at a campsite right as you get to the ridge that we took 5 at.

The sort of tease is once you've got to the ride you then have to climb 2 very steep knobs before you get on the leavel that are more *ss kicking than the tumbling rock!

Here's a trillium from up on top of the mountain:
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Here's some of the flat rocks on top of the mt.
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After hiking the ridge about 3 miles it was time for the wicked descent 3.5 miles and about 1200 plus feet drop into the Middle Fork of the Williams. I took less pics here cause we were getting TIRED having already hiked about 6 miles.
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Apr 13, 2007
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Great pics HD, it looks a great place to lose yourself for a few days !!!
 
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Sep 22, 2003
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We were getting so tired and the descent was so steep on Laurelly Branch I only got a couple pics. One at the beginning and one of this cool rhododedron bloom
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