Backyard and Beyond

Clarence Fahnestock Memorial State Park is in Putnam County and rather inaccessible to us public transport types. But a friend who lives nearby joined us and we HOVed there to explore a tiny bit of the 16,000 acre park, walking around Pelton Pond. This was originally man-made and then CCC-improved, and except for the strange square drain in its southwestern end, looks as natural as can be.Farmers, charcoal burners, and iron miners cleared out the forest from colonial times on, but these enterprises themselves cleared out by the late 19th century. Fahnestock was the guy who started buying up the land in the early 20th century.

Hemlocks and hardwoods have come back nicely, and the beeches were still holding onto their golden leaves the other day. Except for a few people and a dog or two, it was quiet — indeed, I heard and saw a total of only…

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