[at-l] About 12 years and two Days After

Art Cloutman Art at crystalacresnh.com
Mon Sep 27 10:08:04 CDT 2010

Oh,  you probably figured out the title but I should have completed 
it by saying "About 12 years and two Days After Felix".

I also meant to say one of the ladies of the two couples at Goddard 
Shelter admitted to leaving a pair of  clean socks and shirt at the 
Melville Nauhheim shelter  (They were clean smartwool socks - my 
favorite - I should have taken them) to lighten her load.  They had a 
car parked north on the trail at Kelly Stand Road after another night 
at Kid Gore Shelter.  They spent Friday night at Melville after 
walking 1.5 miles in from rt 9.

Emily, Roux and I spent some time on top of Bald Mountain talking to 
the Father /Son hikers about what we observed.  There was a white 
powdery sand like substance at the summit.  The older gentleman, a 
recently retired high School special ed teacher, explained that the 
white material was marble that had been crushed by nature and hikers. 
We asked about the deserted and decayed town of  Glastenbury.  He 
explained that it was a logging town on the convergence of two rivers 
located between the ridge which the AT follows and the West Ridge we 
used to complete our loop.  When the logging petered out around 1888 
the town built a hotel and gambling casinos to attract a different 
kind of business.  They used the old logging old railroad  system to 
get people into the area.  It was quite successful for a time.  But 
the area is subject to flooding from the many mountain streams and 
two rivers.  Around 1900 a particularly heavy flood wiped out two 
railroad trestles which closed business for good.  Without a source 
of income People eventually  moved away.  The homes deteriorated and 
the forest took over.  He said in early spring before the trees have 
new leaves and there is still some snow on the ground you can find 
foundations and other  of signs of the old town.  There are all kinds 
of rumors and myths of people disappearing in the Glastenbury area 
never to be found again.  The area has recently been declared a 
National Wilderness Area and part of the Green Mountain National 
Forest.  Emily and I saw brand new grey signs on the boundaries of 
the newly declared Wilderness.  We also noticed there were absolutely 
no signs of stone walls which are so frequently seen in New England 
woods trails.  It appears there was not attempt at farming or grazing 
in the area.

The West Ridge Trail meets the Bear Wallow Trail at the summit of 
Bald Mountain.  It descends 2.5 miles to Woodford Road and then .5 
miles to route 9.  Right where the trail meets Woodford Road is a 
house.  There were a man and woman and a younger man in the yard of 
this home out with there beagle.  The older of the two gentlemen 
yelled to us.  He asked if we had been up to Bald Mountain.  He 
wanted to know how we got there.  He was astounded that he walked to 
Glastenbury Mountain first and that our vehicles were 1.5 miles up 
the road on route 9.  Then he asked me how old I am.  It floored him 
that I was close to 70 years old.  He said he was 53 and would never 
think of climbing Bald Mountain.  He asked my nationality. I said 
USA.  Then he said you know what do you reply to health background 
for nationality.  I explained that there were so many countries in my 
heritage that I could not answer that question but there is a sea 
captain buried in Old Burial Hill with the grave stone dated 1635 
with my last name.

The walk up route 9 was not pleasant.  There were hundreds of cars 
most with NY plates heading westward.  There was some pretty nice 
foliage probably about half way to peak.  People were likely out to 
take in the autumn display.

I am out of shape.  Need to get out there more often.

Life is Good!!!
Art Cloutman

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