Sunday, March 4, 2018


Chilly and raw with high wind was on the menu for Saturday in Hubbard Park.

Visit #1125, Saturday 3 March 18, 2:00-4:15PM, 3.2 miles.
Temps in the 40's, cloudy with high winds remaining from Friday's storm

Friday saw high winds and rain rip through the Meriden area. In the aftermath, I reasoned there would likely be fallen branches and trees on the trails, Inspection was called for, so I could take inventory and plan next week's route with the chainsaw.

So how hard was the wind blowing on Friday/Saturday, you ask?

"The wind was blowing so turned my clothes inside out and discouraged any trail-blockers from completing their devious tasks !! "  (It's an inside joke so it won't make much sense to those not in on the joke!)

Here's where the contest comes in.

I was going to use a metaphor to describe how hard the wind was blowing but while it's funny, it's a little dirty. I couldn't come up with a G-rated alternative so I turn to you, dear reader, to fill in the blank.

E-mail me your entry to complete the following literary devices:

The wind was blowing so hard....

It was so windy last night...

Or come up with your own expression describing windy conditions.

Winner will selected at random, and I'll edit this blog post to include the winning entry-DONE!

Prize will be a $25 gift card/certificate to somewhere near where you live. Preferably for eats.

I'll publish the other entries but all identities will be kept private.

In the absence of any entries, I'll throw mine out there, and you'll surely cringe and wish you sent an alternative. I'll also give MYSELF the gift card and take MYSELF out to eat.

Entries must be received by midnight Friday, 10 March 18.

Anyway, while leading a couple of first-timers on a hike to Castle Craig a few weeks ago, I spied graffiti on the castle wall and thought, "that's unsightly and just should not be". While my route would lead up to Castle Craig, enroute I could check out the trails for those casualties of the storm.

I didn't have to walk far up the Soap Box Derby track to find my first specimen.

I threw some of the smaller branches aside and plan to return next week with the chainsaw and do a proper job.

Up by Merimere Reservoir, I continued to find more.

I was able to swing it aside but I'll chop it up properly later.

Near the Halfway House. Again, I cleaned up what I could with the tools I brought, but the heavy work would have to wait.

At the Halfway House, I found the remnants of someone's meal.

Enroute up the steep trail to Castle Craig, I came upon my Find of the Week.

I'm guessing this street sign post belongs to the sign which was posted up near the fork in the road to East/West Peak, and was stolen a month or two after installation.

I wasn't going to leave it there, so I carried it up the trail to Castle Craig, where I slipped it through the grill of the gate, hopefully out of reach of sticky fingers.

I'll notify the Meriden Parks Department to pick it up.

On to the graffiti.

My toolkit:

The Goof Off works pretty good, and leaves no stains.

It sure was windy at Castle Craig. How windy was it? Start your brains working!

Done brushing and sanding, I hiked my way back to the parking lot. I found a piece of graffiti on the walkbridge over I-691 and my sandpaper handily took care of it.

Back at the park, I dropped off my trash for the week.

But I wasn't done. I didn't inspect all the trails due to time constraints. So on Sunday, I returned via my mountain bike to finish checking out the lower trails. Good thing too, for I found a fallen tree on the Green Trail.

In the coming weeks I hope to reach the remaining outlying trails, finish my inspection, and clean them up with the chainsaw if necessary.

Now-HOW windy was it...?

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