<%image(20051017-mt greylock.jpg|250|168|mt greylock)%> This is what Mt. Greylock (largest peak in MA at 3,400 ft.) looks like on a clear, early fall day. It’s a beautiful peak surrounded by valleys that have been carved out by glaciers billions of years ago (just taking a shot at you “young earth” creationists out there). In any case, it is currently middle to late in the leaf-peepin’ season and Greylock still doesn’t look as good as it does in this picture. In addition, 8-9 straight days of clouds and rain made it look rather grim and foreboding as we drove down to it for a little hike yesterday, blindly clutching to the hope of avoiding rain with “scattered showers” in the forecast.
<%image(20051017-leaves in water.jpg|216|162|leavesinwater)%> I went a bit crazy during our hike up Greylock taking pictures of the incredibly clear Roaring Brook that had hints of green, blue, and gray at times. We’re so used to brown stream water from the pine trees in the green mountains that we acted like tourists experiencing the clear, warm waters of the Carribean for the first time. There were some beautiful leaves, but unfortunately most of them were on the ground! So I did my best to document the fall colors and the pretty stream as opportunity presented itself. Here are a few glimpses of our time.
<%image(20051017-greylock valley.jpg|216|162|valley)%>We did not hike to the summit of Greylock, we didn’t quite have time for that yesterday. But we did hike the roaring brook trail to stoney ledge on the northern side of Greylock. The ledge is a front row seat for the valley that was carved by the glacier. As we reached it, rain began to pelt us and clouds descended like a plague. We enjoyed the view for 10 fleeting minutes and then were enveloped by swirling clouds, all while the rain continued.
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The trail was basically a small stream. Our feet got damp on the way up and totally soaked on the way down. It was quite muddy as well and the leaves were the perfect cover so that you never knew what you were stepping in. The one phot opportunity that I could not pass up was the elusive red maple leaf. I did not see many and even on one occasion posed one on a rock to get a clear shot of it. The one pictured here was unmanipulated and was one of the brightest leaves I had seen all day.
<%image(20051017-roaring brook.jpg|216|162|brook)%> My pictures will never do justice to the natural beauty of this stream. Minus the rain and mud, it was one of the most enjoyable hikes that I have been on, and feasting my eyes on the clear water of Roaring Brook was a big part of that.