The tracking snow is mostly gone after the all-night rain and the water is running in my little brook. I did get the blower out for the second storm and shortly after I jumped on to my skis and went around the loop out back just because I could. The Forest Rangers had a couple difficult rescues in Lewis County, working in more than four feet of snow. Working with the local snow groomer breaking trail, they completed both rescues. I saw a new rig that I hadn’t seen before, a truck on snow tracks which might come in handy in other situations in snow country. Some other hikers got off the trails in the High Peaks in the snowstorm and they were luckily found [in good health] not far from the trails. Hikers and hunters should check the weather before going out and maybe wait for a better day, rather than risking their lives and the lives of the rescuers.
For the last ten days I’ve been checking Pine Marten traps, and got my limit of six in three checks of my traps. They were everywhere I went to set traps. [They were] looking for food, as one of their main sources of food, the beechnuts, weren’t there this fall. Using my secret formula (and a little essence of skunk for an attractor) they were not much of a challenge this fall. Last year with all the beechnuts, you could hardly get one to come to set. I did get two at three different locations, and certainly didn’t hurt the population as there were still tracks in all areas when I was pulling traps.
I trapped them for several years going to different spots in the area each year, and this year they were wherever I went. I checked other areas and saw tracks there [as well]. The colors of the fur on these members of the weasel family always amaze me, as no two look the same. I did get five males and one female. The males have bigger territories than females, and that’s why you normally catch more males than females. There is only about an inch or two difference in size in the adults of each sex. Most were caught in pole-set Conibear traps, with only a couple sprung traps [within] the ten days. That could have been red squirrels or flying squirrels, as they also come to these sets.
The Old Forge Library announced that there are now two electric car charging stations in the back right corner of the parking lot. These will operate even when the power is out, as they will be run by the library generator. [This is] a nice addition for the town of Old Forge. There is also a charging station at the rest area in Eagle Bay. With this on-and-off weather pattern, there have been some super red sunrises and sunsets. Those red sunrises mean a storm is coming. [It typically isn’t] too long after it fades into black rain or snow clouds [that] some kind of storm soon [follows.] Red sun at night, sailors’ delight, and red sun in the morning, sailors take warning. These sunrises and sunsets made for good photo opportunities. I [captured] one sunrise from the upstairs window and missed the super sunset one night, as the whole western sky was a fire red.
This is the last week of Big Game season here in the Adirondacks. I’ve heard it has been a safe one, so let’s keep it that way by using hunter safety guidelines. Treat every gun as if it was loaded, keep the barrel of the gun pointed in a safe direction, identify your target and what is beyond [it], never use your gun scope to identify a target (use binoculars,) and wear [a] hunter orange hat or vest (as required). The numbers of Evening Grosbeaks have gone down some, but I still had over fifty today [November 28]. I’ve banded forty-five, and some of mine have either gone further south looking for some wild food as well as using feeders. One did get a good finger nip as it was leaving my hand out the window…and tried to take my finger in flight with her. I did have over one hundred of them for a few days. They should be called “Morning Grosbeaks” as they are here at daylight and [aren’t] here much in the afternoon or evening.
Talk about name changes, I’ve heard they want to change the name of Squaw Lake in the Moose River Wild Forest. I think it should be called Osprey Lake. There was a pair of Ospreys nesting here when I came in 1966. [They were] one of only two pair nesting in this area (the other was at Shallow Lake.) The ones (or their offspring) have nested successfully at Squaw [Lake] every year since (and again this year.) I haven’t heard anything about Indian Lake, which is just down the road. It is a road, not a trail. If they are going to count the mileage, let’s make it a road again…which it is.
A search on Cascade Ridge in two feet of snow, but that’s another story. See ya.
Photo at top: Sunrise at Eight Acre Wood. Photo by Gary Lee.