It has been almost a year since I first explored the Bartlett Mountain Balds. Since that time, I’ve been to the balds about six times. It is a special place, where the forest opens to reveal and expanse of exposed, windswept bedrock, and teaberry and lowbush blueberry bushes that glow red in autumn. Views skim across the tops of the trees to reveal distant ridges. And deep, green, impenetrable spruce forests guard the balds. Its secret and kept by its isolation, as only the wind announces its presence as it surges through the trees with a distant, tidal rumble; its weight causes the forests to bend and groan.
I recently returned to the balds and had the pleasure to bring Geren and Shannon with me. They enjoyed the hike, with jumbled rock boulders and overhangs, and the snow covered balds. This is a different world. The valleys had no snow, but almost 8 inches covered the mountain tops. Winter still holds firm on these islands in the sky. Heavy grey clouds sailed overhead as a lone hawk sped above us. Tracks of coyotes, raccoons, weasels, and a huge whitetail buck kepts us company in these lonely woods.