Bumbling around at Big Hill Pond State Park

Phone Pics 3
So, another hike was planned for this weekend, but things didn’t pan out, so we decided to postpone it. So, I decided to take my pack, which happened to be all packed up already, and head out to Big Hill Pond State Park to do a little day hiking yesterday. (Link to map HERE.)

Most of the times that I go to Big Hill Pond, I end up hiking along the south side of the park, as there are more “attractions on this end. There is of course the lake(s), a fire tower which can be climbed for the best view in the park, the Dismal Swamp area, and just more trails. On the other hand, the north side gets less traffic as there are less trails, and fewer attractions. For this reason, many of the trails on the north side have been neglected for quite some time.

The times I have been to the north side, I have tried to find my way to a spot called Rocky Knob, which (I believe) is the parks high point. Needless to say, due to the trail conditions, I never found it because the trails simply stopped…if I could even find them to begin with! As well, the markings on the trails (once found) are a bit confusing and inconsistent. However, yesterday, I decided that I would give it another shot.

Upon entering the park, I immediately noticed some new trail signs that had been set-up since I was last there. (As seen in the photo above. The new sign is on the left, the old is on the right.) The good thing was, I immediately noticed where the trail was… however, after stepping out onto the trail, just past the signs, I realized that, while new signs were up, the trails were still pretty much non-existent…

As seen in the video above, after bumbling around for a bit just about a hundred feet past the new sign, I finally realized that there simply was no trail. Instead, there were markers that I had to follow. These consisted of both white blazes on some trees, as well as a little plastic signs painted green (of all colors) with a stick-backpacker-figure painted on it. I found that for a while, I could simply stand at one of the markings, then look around and usually see the next one. Then I simply made my way to the next one and repeated the process.

However, I finally got to a point in which I did not see any more markings… At this point I decided to turn around and track my way back to the road, then road hike to the other end of the loop and go in from that way…

After coming in from the top of the loop, I immediately realized that the “trail” was the same as on the other end: non-existent. However, Rocky Knob was pretty close to where I was, so I simply turned and made my own way up to where I thought was Rocky Knob would be… and it turned out to that I was right! Rocky Knob is simply an area with a number of large rocks lying around. It is actually a nice little spot and I plan to revisit it again another day since I now know where it is…

However, by the time we found it, I was super hot and sweaty, and just ready to get back. As well, Little Bit was with me, and she was in the same condition. I actually carried her back once we got back to the road.

So, while I didn’t get to head out to the hike I was supposed to do, I did finally find Rocky Knob at Big Hill Pond State Park, so that was awesome!

Still a good day!

Also, for those interested, the last 9 or 10 minutes of the above video shows the contents of my pack that I was going to carry with me on the (original) hike. The total weight was 9 lbs, 1.8 oz. This weight included a day & a half worth of food, my water & fuel, and even 30.5 oz of camera gear… Pretty impressive if I may say so myself… pretty impressive…  🙂

Thanks for stopping!

~Stick~

 

About Stick

My blog is essentially a record of my hiking career. Through it, I, and others, can see how I have evolved from a heavy weight backpacker, to a smarter, more efficient, lightweight backpacker. Through the use of video, still photos, and of course writing, one can see my progression, as well as check out some of the places I hike, and not to mention some cool, lightweight gear options. For me, my blog is a journal, but for others, I hope that it is an interactive learning tool to aid them in their own progression towards lightweight backpacking.
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9 Responses to Bumbling around at Big Hill Pond State Park

  1. Chad have you ever tried using a compass and map? to keep you close to the trail or get to your destination? “No sarcasm intended but a honest question”

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  2. Thank you Chad for posting its these posts I truly enjoy as I get to travel along your path which is different than my view that makes for different perspective in life.

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  3. jaydub says:

    Today I learned that this blog I follow (yours) is written by a guy who apparently lives within an hour of where I grew up. And 2 hours of where I am now! I never knew this.

    Small world – because I’m pretty sure I just found your blog randomly, and have been following it for quite some time.

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  4. C_nugget says:

    Hey.. Great post! It’s nice to see you get out with your gear even after a change in the backpacking plan and in all that heat. It’s a good reminder that backpacking techniques can be practiced anywhere, not just on a trip. Smart to have a secondary plan when things don’t quite pan out too.

    Just curious.. on the map shown in the video, what do the white and red dots symbols represent? I noticed that there are two white ones on the “trail” just below Rocky Knob but not at the point itself. I was wondering if you would have to blaze your own trail to get to the actual point of Rocky Knob(not that you weren’t already blazing your own trail)? It would be neat to see if you could visit this site again and uncover more of the missing trail points. Happy Trails 🙂

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    • Stick says:

      c_nugget,

      The red dots stand for horse trail, while the white dots are foot trails. And according to the map, the trail did not actually cross over Rocky Knob, it was off trail just a little.

      It was a neat area though, and I will go back again, but I am going to wait for it to cool down some… 🙂

      Thanks for stopping by!

      ~Stick~

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  5. John C says:

    Sorry, the Wonderland trail is in Washington, my bad.

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  6. John C says:

    Are you still doing the Wonderland trail in Oregon? Hope you can make it out here sometime dude, think you’d like it out here in the west.

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