7204 Days Remaining

Last night the Great North Woods and mountains received an inch or two of wet snow. Temperatures hovering around the freezing mark caused the air to be very damp with areas of thick fog.

This type of weather can be the most difficult to operate in as everything is wet, muddy, and cold. They talk of “General Winter” but I think “General Freezing Point” is often more problematic to life and survival.

After packaging and shipping the recent orders for my business I went for a 4.35 mile walk along the woods roads complex on Mt. Cleveland in Bethlehem, New Hampshire as I often do.

Carrying a full daypack, I am trying to develop a series of 5 to 6 miles daily walking loops. As is usual in these mountains, the way is usually quite steep in places which is exactly the kind of workout I am seeking.

Along the way I came upon the track of a bobcat. Fresh in the wet snow, these excellent paw prints were some of the best I have ever seen. This set of bobcat tracks are located only about 100 yards or so from the where I cut the fisher cat tracks a few days ago.

This morning I cut the trail of a bobcat.  This near perfect print was made in fresh wet snow.
This morning I cut the trail of a bobcat. This near perfect print was made in fresh wet snow. Note the tomahawk used for scale.

The shear number of predators in this area – coyotes, bobcats, and fisher cats – leads me to think this is an area lush with wildlife in order to support these largely meat eating animals. Black bear, moose, and deer are also evident as I often cut their trails and see their scat and occasionally have visual sightings during my frequent hikes in this section of forest.

Back home, I fired twenty-five rounds of .22 pellets on the Odin Mountain Compound Air Rifle Range (OMCARR). Wet clumps of snow were continually falling from the overhanging limbs of a white pine tree adjacent to the 25 yard station. While I am accustomed to this happening with frequency while in the forest, on the air rifle range this is problematic since the rifle will often become wet and need careful drying out.

Heavy wet snow falling from the tree limbs above the 25 yard rifle station
Heavy wet snow falling from the tree limbs above the 25 yard rifle station

Tomorrow I will use a pruning hook to remove those branches that are directly above that location.

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